Anoj Singh stumbles on questions about McKinsey, Trillian contract with Eskom

Anoj Singh maintained that Eskom’s agreement with the pair was signed in January 2016 but the commission showed him a letter that he wrote in February in which discussions were still ongoing.

Former Eskom CFO Anoj Singh at the state capture commission on 18 March 2021. YouTube screengrab/SABC.

JOHANNESBURG - Former Eskom chief financial officer, Anoj Singh, said that it was not true that consultancy firm McKinsey backdated its contract to January 2016 even though it was signed only in October that year.

Despite his insistence, he couldn’t tell the state capture inquiry exactly when it was signed.

The state capture commission spent Monday going through a maze of communication to determine whether the R1.6 billion that was paid to McKinsey and Gupta-linked Trillian was deserved.

The partnership was paid the money because the contentious contract was eventually terminated.

"They do not rely on the fact that an agreement did not exist to repay the money, they go through this entire process of saying now they understand that Eskom misled them," Singh said.

Singh said that McKinsey was disingenuous.

He maintained that Eskom’s agreement with the pair was signed in January 2016 but the commission showed him a letter that he wrote in February in which discussions were still ongoing.

Eskom terminated its agreement with the pair a few months later.

McKinsey partner, Alexander Weiss, told the commission that the agreement was only signed in October but it was backdated in what appeared to be a manipulation to make sure the company qualified for the termination fees.

"They would not have sought to advantage themselves in any way by saying they signed the letter in October if in fact, they signed it much earlier," Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo said.

"Mr Chair if that is the case, I come back to my original point that I made that then the June letter is made in bad faith or it's fraudulent," Singh replies

It’s still not clear if or when this particular contract was signed.

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