Molefe says any Eskom bonus in line with policy

Cape Town - Brian Molefe would have to sign a permanent contract with Eskom in order to qualify for any bonuses that may be handed out in the future.

Molefe, who was appointed acting chief executive for an initial period of three months while CEO Tshediso Matona is on suspension, was asked at a media briefing on Wednesday whether he would consider a permanent appointment, and when he would take bonuses offered.

"I do not think it will be wise to say that I am considering a permanent appointment... while (there is) still a suspended chief executive," he said, noting that any decision in this regard would have to await the outcome of a probe into the suspensions at Eskom. "Let us await the outcome of the processes that are unfolding," he said.

Molefe said he would cross that bridge "when I get to it (being appointed chief executive permanently)", but added that he remains the group chief executive of parastatal Transnet.

Bonuses are "pre-determined" and if he were still in the job at the time, he would "not expect anything extraordinary" like the other executives at Eskom. Bonuses would be in line with the policies of Eskom "and nothing over and above the policies of Eskom".

Eskom bonuses not paid for 2013/14

Meanwhile, Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown has reported to MPs that short-term bonuses for the ten management executives at troubled state power monopoly Eskom were not paid in the 2013/14 financial year.

Total pay “all-inclusive” for the ten for the 12-month period ended March 31 2014 was R53m. “This includes termination payments related to (now former chief executive) Brian Dames of R15 367 000,” Brown reported.

DA MP Natasha Mazzone asked what yardstick was used to determine the awarding of incentive bonuses, as some of those awarded bonuses “are now on suspension”.

She asked whether the bonuses were performance-related or discretionary, and also what the total value of the remuneration of all Eskom executive directors was – including short-term bonuses.

Michael-Mazzone also asked whether Brown approved the incentive bonuses.

Noting that the decision to approve incentive bonuses rests with the Eskom board, Brown said the short-term bonus scheme is based on “the yearly performance of executives and no such bonuses were paid for the period April 1 2013 to March 31 2014”.

A long-term incentive scheme is designed to “attract, retain and reward executives in comparison to benchmarked organisations of similar stature in the local and international markets”. For the period April 1 2012 to March 31 2015, long-term incentive bonuses had not been decided upon or paid, said Brown.

She did say that long-term incentive bonuses drawn from Eskom grants issued on April 1 2011 were paid out in 2014, but the amounts paid out were not provided.

Brown reported that the board based its decision on bonuses on “average organisational performance conditions measured over three years (the lifespan of any particular grant for this purpose) in line with the Eskom corporate plan and shareholder compact, and such performance conditions comprise both financial and non-financial targets”.

She confirmed that qualifying for bonuses is performance-related, but the pay-out decision “is discretionary as the board could take a decision to delay pay-out or not pay out depending on various other factors”. She did not list these factors.

In a previous reply to a question in Parliament, Brown revealed that one of the suspended executives, Dan Marokane, was paid a salary of R2.8m and a bonus of R1.1m, totalling R3.9m in 2010/11.

READ: INFOGRAPHIC: Which Eskom chief earned the most?

In the following year, 2011/12, he was paid a total of R4.2m including an incentive of R1.16m, and in 2012/13 he was paid R4.39m including an incentive of R1.23m. In 2013/14 he was paid a total of R4.64m, including an incentive of R1.24m.

Dames' income over a 10-year period (2004/5 to 2013/14) reached just short of R50m.

According to Brown, he received a salary and bonus that increased from R1.142m in 2004/5 to nearly R10m in 2013/14 when he retired from the job.

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