Molefe says he was left 'shaken' by Zuma's push to reinstate Montana at Prasa

The former president has been implicated at the State Capture Inquiry, this time by former Prasa board chairperson Popo Molefe who said he tried to muscle him and the board to reappoint Montana as CEO.

FILE: A screengrab of Transnet board chair Popo Molefe appearing at the Zondo Commission on 7 May 2019. Picture: YouTube

JOHANNESBURG – Former board chair at the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) Popo Molefe says the then president Jacob Zuma tried to reverse the board’s decision to accept former chief executive officer (CEO) Lucky Montana's resignation.

Molefe testified at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry that he attended a marathon meeting attended by ministers Jeff Radebe and Dipuo Peters in 2015, where the request was made.

He said this was impossible because the board had already accepted Montana's resignation.

Once again the former president has been implicated at the State Capture Inquiry, this time by former Prasa board chairperson Molefe.

Molefe said Zuma tried to muscle him and the board to reappoint Montana as CEO of the embattled state-owned entity.

He also said Montana had resigned amid allegations of corruption.

“…and to some extent, he put the minister under pressure to say, ‘it is the desire of the president that you reverse the decision of the board.’ But the minister didn’t want to go that route. It would have been a very ugly scene.”

The former board chairperson said this left him shaken.

“The head of the state, the president, was now directly attempting to interfere with matters of the board of directors of Prasa. That was really of great concern.”

Molefe will continue his testimony at the commission next week.