Daniels testimony: Koko told me to write letters on prepaying Tegeta R1.6bn

The former head of legal and compliance at Eskom is back at the state capture commission testifying about board decisions to approve the Tegeta prepayment as well as Brian Molefe’s appointment.

A YouTube screengrab of former Eskom secretary Suzanne Daniels at the state capture commission on 7 December 2020.

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom’s former head of legal and compliance, Suzanne Daniels, said the utility’s former CEO Matshela Koko instructed her to write letters and board memoranda to prepay Tegeta R1.6 billion.

Daniels is back at the commission testifying about Eskom board decisions to approve the prepayment as well as Brian Molefe’s appointment.

She denied former board chair Dan Ngubane’s version that she told him to convene an urgent board meeting to make those decisions.

Advovate Pule Seleka is leading Daniels' evidence.

Seleka: “And Mr Koko requested you to do what?”

Daniels: “To draft correspondence for him.”

Seleka: “And did you do that?”

Daniels: “Yes, I did."

Seleka: “And it was correspondence to what effect?’’

Daniels: “He wanted to make the director general aware of the challenges Eskom was facing in respect of the coal supply to Eskom.”

Daniels is testifying about Eskom’s decision to grant Tegeta a R1.6 billion prepayment, but the commission has evidence that former Eskom CFO Anoj Singh gave approval for that money to be used as a guarantee for Tegeta to purchase Optimum Coal Mine.

All these decisions were made by a board that’s now under scrutiny.

“In his affidavit, Dr Ngubane says company secretary Ms Daniels requested an urgent meeting on the basis of the letter Mr Matshela Koko had written to the DG of the Department of Mineral Resources,” said Pule.

“No, Mr Chairperson, I would not call the meeting as the company secretary. The meeting would be the prerogative of the board chairperson,” Daniels responded.

Koko distanced himself from letters written by Daniels and edited by Salim Essa, but Daniels said it was common knowledge that Koko was Essa’s ‘pet’ and talked to him regularly.

At the same time, Daniels agreed with the commission that Singh tricked the board when he single-handedly approved the R1.6 billion guarantee for Tegeta.

She said the board received documents relating to the guarantee on the evening of 7 December in 2015, met at 8:30am the following day, and by 9am it had reached its decision to approve the pre-payment.

And the following day Singh approved the guarantee for Tegeta.

WATCH: State capture commission proceedings

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