#StateCapture: Assumptions will damage South Africa, says Eskom chairman

The utility held a briefing to present facts that it says were not included in the state capture report.

FILE: Former Eskom board chairperson Ben Ngubane. Picture: Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom chairman Ben Ngubane says making assumptions as the Public Protector did in her report will damage the country.

The utility held a special briefing yesterday to present a number of facts that it says were not included in the report.

Ngubane has come out strongly in defence of the power utility’s CEO, Brian Molefe, and maintains that all transactions have been above board.

He says speculating will not help resolve issues.

“So please man, don’t draw conclusions on what happened in the Public Protector’s report. You read things and say maybe it’s illegal. Establish the legality of it first and then talk. This thing of setting people’s minds against other people is going to kill this country.”

Eskom maintains that Madonsela did not give the utility the right of reply or the opportunity to cross-examine her evidence.

On Thursday, Molefe wept as he defended Eskom’s decision to prepay Gupta-owned company Tegeta for coal.

The report revealed that Eskom helped Gupta-owned company Tegeta take over Optimum mine by agreeing to a R600 million pre-payment for coal.

Eskom board member Pat Naidoo insisted that pre-paying suppliers is common practice.

“We talk to our investors 24/7, we talk to our customers, we’ve got real-time duty and suddenly we are hit with this. The findings, observations are very sad and finally the Eskom board is considering taking the report of the Public Protector on review.”

Eskom has disputed the report’s findings, saying that all transactions complied with the utility's procurement policies.
Naidoo says all this information was provided to the Public Protector.

Eskom will consider taking the report on review.

Read the Public Protector's full 'State of Capture' report below:

State Capture Report 2016 by Primedia Broadcasting on Scribd

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)