Lynne Brown: The interim arrangements represents new dawn at Eskom

Brown says several allegations against the utility and executives are still being investigated but the company is doing better than it has in the past.

FILE: Lynne Brown. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown says the interim appointments at Eskom represent a new start for the parastatal which has recorded positive results at its annual general meeting.

Brown announced the appointment of four new board members and the reappointment of acting chair Zethembe Khoza whose names will be brought to the cabinet for approval.

The minister also says she made a very good choice by appointing Johnny Dladla as the new acting CEO as he hasn’t been compromised and has the experience to run a company.

She says several allegations against the utility and executives are still being investigated but the company is doing better than it has in the past.

“The interim arrangements represents a new dawn at Eskom. The company is in a better financial position than it was two years ago.

“I have asked Eskom’s new leadership to roll up its collective sleeves and immediately address the management contract, conflict of interests and the quality of coal supply.”

WATCH: Minister Lynne Brown briefs the public on the state of Eskom

Brown said the past two months have been difficult for Eskom and while she indicated that it may be best to rotate the board she’s also had to ensure continuity.

The minister also says she made a very good choice by appointing Dladla as the new acting CEO as he hasn’t been compromised and has the experience to run a company.

There were expectations that Brown would appoint an entirely new Eskom board but she only appointed four new members bringing the number to nine.

“I indicated that it may be in Eskom’s interest to rotate the board but this would have to be balanced against continuity.”

The minister said several allegations involving Eskom and the executives have continued to surface but these matters are still under investigation.

“Further investigations are now proceeding. My department is in discussions with the Special Investigations Unit with a view to probing activities at Eskom since the country experienced load shedding.”

Brown said the new interim arrangements represent a new dawn at Eskom and the utility is doing better financially than it was two years ago.

‘ESKOM BOARD MUST DECIDE MATSHELA KOKO’S FATE’

Brown said it’s up to the Eskom board to decide what action will be taken against former acting CEO Matshela Koko.

Koko, who was appointed to head the power utility after Brian Molefe’s departure, was suspended earlier this year after allegations of a possible conflict of interest involving his stepdaughter, who was a director of a company that landed R1 billion in business from Eskom.

Law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr and Nkonki completed its investigation into Koko and handed over the report to the minister and the board.

Reports this week emerged that Koko has been cleared of any wrongdoing.

During a press briefing on Friday, Brown did not disclose details of the outcome of the investigation.

“I’ve had the Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr and Nkonki report for a week now, but the board would have to tell me what to do. It’s an investigation by the board and the board has to write to me and tell me what actions they are going to take."

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)