'Appointment procedures at parastatals are crucial'

Public Enterprises will propose to cabinet changes to how people are appointed to parastatals.

FILE: Analysts say political interference has led to many disputes and failure of parastatals to perform better. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Public Enterprises acting Director General Matsietsie Mokholo said they're going to propose to cabinet changes to how people are appointed to parastatals, when government ministers can intervene in them and how they are funded, in a new position paper.

The last few weeks have seen the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) CEO Lucky Montana claiming he was fired illegally, the South African Airways (SAA) receiving another acting CEO, while both Eskom and Transnet don't have permanent heads.

Mokholo said while people do perceive ministers intervening in parastatals as political interference, the way this is done needs to change.

"What you do need to do is to move away from a perception and instead provide a methodology that becomes more transparent for the public to deal with that perception because it's inevitable if you're a shareholder you'll be close to your company."

While political analyst and Wits Vice Chancellor professor Adam Habib said the current situation needs to change

"And the way you stop that is by closing the avenue for political interference and the way you stop that is by ensuring that you've good boards."