Eskom suspends 7 managers at Tutuka over allegations of 'continued gross negligence'

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Eskom has placed 7 managers on precautionary suspension.
Eskom has placed 7 managers on precautionary suspension.
Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Eskom has placed seven managers on precautionary suspension over possible continued gross negligence in the performance of their duties at Tutuka power station, the state-owned power utility said on Wednesday.

The precautionary suspension is pending a disciplinary process into alleged misconduct.

The alleged misconduct includes a failure to perform their duties, leading to poor plant performance, said Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha.

But the names of the individuals and their positions cannot be revealed as yet as the disciplinary process is ongoing, said Mantshantsha. "They will all be granted an opportunity to present their case in a properly constituted disciplinary process."

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) closed a probe into alleged sabotage at Eskom's Tutuka power station in December 2020, Fin24 reported. This came a year after President Cyril Ramaphosa cut short a foreign trip to announce that sabotage had contributed to severe power cuts that led to unprecedented stage 6 load shedding. But according to the Hawks, the NPA closed the case, citing a "lack of evidence to validate the initial suspicion".

On Wednesday, Mantshantsha did not comment on whether the suspension of the seven managers was related to the above-mentioned incident.

Recently, Eskom also placed employees responsible for managing and executing the work that resulted in an explosion at the Medupi power station on precautionary suspension.

Eskom opened a criminal case of malicious damage to property following the explosion of a generator at Medupi on Sunday, but denied it was investigating staff for sabotage.

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