We’ve been deceived before, portfolio committee tells new Eskom board

The committee is doing a walkabout at Eskom’s headquarters in Johannesburg where they’ll also interact with staff members.

Members of the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises meeting newly-elected Eskom board to establish a working relationship. Picture: Gia Nicolaides/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Members of the Public Enterprises Portfolio Committee remain sceptical about Eskom’s turnaround plan, saying they’ve been deceived before.

The committee met with Eskom’s new board members and acting CEO Phakamani Hadebe earlier on Thursday in order to establish a good working relationship.

Eskom has removed eight compromised officials in the past 10 days and vowed to raise funds and convince investors that the state-owned entity is now in good hands.

The government appointed a new 13-member board in January and instructed management to remove anyone who is facing serious allegations.

Chairman Jabu Mabuza and Hadebe told the portfolio committee that they are committed to changing things at Eskom; firstly, by removing certain individuals and secondly by raising funds for the cash-strapped utility.

While the committee members listened intently to their enthusiastic commitments, many remained sceptical.

Committee Chairperson Zukiswa Rantho says they’ve heard the same kind of commitment before.

“By faces that had the same enthusiasm that you have now… I wish that you can focus on the work.”

Marshall Dlamini also raised concerns, particularly about the challenges Eskom will face with regards to the ministry.

“I feel sorry for the interim CEO because the deputy minister told us on Wednesday that he sees nothing wrong about organising business people to his private residence.”

The committee is doing a walkabout at Eskom’s headquarters in Johannesburg where they’ll also interact with staff members.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)