- Pravin Gordhan says it's still a long way to go before Eskom as fully recovered
- The Public Enterprises Minister conceded that the damage done by state capture won't be easily fixed
- The politician has responded to allegations of political interference at the state-owned entity
Pravin Gordhan has admitted that it will take a long time before the power utility has recovered from the fallout of state capture:
"At the outset, it must be noted that it will take a long time for Eskom to recover fully from the damage caused by state capture."
Briefly.co.za reported that the Public Enterprises Minister had been accused of interfering in key decisions at the embattled state-owned entity by board member Busisiwe Mavuso.
Mavuso, according to TimesLIVE, told a parliamentary committee that politicians were meddling:
"Eskom has experienced intense political pressure over the past year to keep the lights on irrespective of the cost. There are decisions that we know we have to be making as this board, but the shareholder quickly comes in and says that you can't do that because it is politically inconvenient."
This is understood to be a reference to the minister, who is the shareholder at the utility. Now, Gordhan has defended his involvement at Eskom:
"The Memorandum of Incorporation of Company [including Eskom] sets out the responsibilities, duties and rights of the shareholder and directors. The shareholder, particularly the 100% shareholder, as in the case of the government and many state-owned companies, can have a range of rights in relation to the governance of SOEs. The shareholder compact prescribes the various performance targets expected to be met by an entity.
"Within these parameters, the board must hold management to account on delivery of these targets. Likewise, the shareholder department must hold the board accountable.
When things at an entity have reached critical stages, the shareholder is entitled to help diagnose an issue and suggest solutions, reports New24.
Gordhan and the Eskom board were recently accused of misleading President Cyril Ramaphosa on SA's load-shedding crisis by Deputy President David Mabuza.
The entity had promised Ramaphosa that load-shedding would only resume this week, but unplanned breakdowns had prompted outages earlier than planned for.
Enjoyed reading our story? Download BRIEFLY's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major South African news!