Execs suspended as Eskom launches inquiry into its ‘challenges’

2015-03-12 11:11

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Eskom chairperson Zola Tsotsi announced this morning that chief executive Tshediso Matona has been suspended as well as other executives and a full inquiry is to be launched into Eskom.

In its quest to address “the current challenges faced by Eskom”, the board deemed it “prudent to seek an independent view” on the poor performance of generation plants, delays in bringing the new generation plant on-stream, high costs of primary energy and cash flow challenges.

Tsotsi told media at Eskom’s headquarters Megawatt Park that the four executives – including Matona, finance director Tsholofelo Molefe, group capital executive Dan Marokane and technology and commercial executive Matshela Koko – were suspended so that the inquiry could take place with unfettered access to Eskom.

The inquiry would have full access to the suspended executives.

“There is nothing sinister happening,” he said. “This is a fact-finding inquiry ... which will last for three months.

“If in the process of this fact-finding process we find that there is improper conduct, then we will have to address those things,” he said.

“But we are not setting out with that in mind.”

One of the current nonexecutive board members, Zethembe Khoza, will take over as interim chief executive.

“The scope won’t focus on structural change, but could has the potential to recommend that in its outcome,” Tsotsi said.

“The role of the shareholder supports this exercise. The shareholder has no role, beyond supporting the need for us to do this. Have we lost confidence in the current chief executive? The answer is of course not.”

Tsotsi stressed that the company had not embarked on an investigation, because that would imply an attitude of mind that there is blame to be associated here.

“There is no culpability here. It is to get facts and to help us think more clearly and address more succinctly the problems the organisation is facing.”

He added: “There is no crisis.”

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