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‘There was no need for Eskom to suspend four executives’

The utility suspended then CEO along with three others in March following the launch of an inquiry.

FILE: The NUM’s Paris Mashego says there are still questions about what went wrong, and why these executives were suspended in the first place. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) says there was no need to suspend four top executives at Eskom earlier this year.

The utility suspended then CEO Tshediso Matona along with three others in March following the launch of an independent inquiry into the utility.

Yesterday, Eskom released a statement saying all four executives, three of whom have now left, have been cleared of any wrongdoing.

The NUM's Paris Mashego says there are still questions about what went wrong, and why these executives were suspended in the first place.

"There was no need to suspend these capable leaders, who were employed to run the organisation. Unfortunately at the time we had a chairman who was not interested in making progress at Eskom."

The four were Matona, head of capital projects Dan Marokane, technology and commercial executive Matshela Koko and finance director Tsholofelo Molefe.

Matona took his suspension to the Labour Court but was unsuccessful in being reinstated. Instead he parted ways with the utility a few weeks later.

Following the suspensions, Brian Molefe, who had been heading Transnet, was appointed acting head, while Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a war room committee to deal with Eskom's problems.

Molefe's contract has now been extended by three months.

Eskom chairman Ben Ngubane has now confirmed that the board has received a presentation following the investigation which clears the remaining three executives.

They will return to work with immediate effect.