Molefe must pay back pension millions, court orders

Brian Molefe. (City Press)
Brian Molefe. (City Press)

Johannesburg -  A court ordered Brian Molefe on Thursday to pay back all the pension payouts made to him. A full bench of judges found against Molefe and set aside the pension agreement.

The former Eskom CEO was also ordered to pay costs.

MORE ON MOLEFE RULING:

The ruling comes after trade union Solidarity approached the high court to declare Molefe's controversial pension award of about R30m, as well as more than R10m already paid out to him, unlawful.

According to Anton van der Bijl, head of Solidarity’s Centre for Fair Labour Practices, Solidarity wanted justice on the matter and sought an order that obliged Molefe to pay back all pension payouts and benefits granted to him.

Molefe briefly returned as CEO of Eskom on May 15 after the scandal around his pension emerged, but was removed again two weeks later when Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown ordered the board to reverse his reinstatement. Molefe later challenged this decision when he filed Labour Court papers against the board and Brown.

Political parties and Solidarity then filed a consolidated court application to challenge Eskom’s decision to reappoint Molefe as CEO as well as the approval of his R30m pension payout. 

Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown also filed explanatory affidavits last year, but did not challenge the relief sought by the applicants. 

In the affidavit Brown said that a letter from former Eskom chairperson Dr Ben Ngubane regarding Molefe’s retirement package never reached her.

Molefe and other Eskom executives were grilled in Parliament at the inquiry into state capture at Eskom about Molefe's pension bonanza.

When Eskom announced its annual results last year, it stated in the notes to its financial statements that the R30m Molefe received as an early retirement benefit would only be refunded to the company pursuant to a court order.

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