Khoza rates Eskom management 'three out of ten'

Eskom logo.
Eskom logo.

Eskom acting chairman Sethembe Khoza has rated the management of the utility over the last two years at three out of ten where ten is the highest score.

He gave the low rating under questioning by Inkatha Freedom Party MP Narend Singh during the inquiry into state capture being conducted by Parliament's public enterprises committee.

Wednesday was the last sitting of the inquiry for 2017 and it will resume in January.

Khoza‚ who prior to being appointed acting chairman‚ was an ordinary board member of the utility since November 2014‚ said his rating was based on the high turnover of chairpersons and CEOs at the utility.

There have been six CEOs since May 2014‚ the majority of them in an acting capacity. Khoza said this turnover eroded the institutional memory of the company and prevented CEOs from executing a strategy.

African Christian Democratic Party MP Steve Swart suggested that three might be too high a ranking given the reputational damage that Eskom had suffered with all the corruption scandals in which it was involved. It was damaging to Eskom's reputation that the board received reports following investigations into wrongdoing and then did nothing to act upon them.

"You should act on those reports instantly to restore the credibility of Eskom‚" Swart said.

African National Congress MP Mondli Gungubele suggested that as soon as a report dealt with the Guptas it was not taken further and when a good person did not assist in facilitating the interests of the Guptas he or she were suspended. Khoza denied under questioning by Democratic Alliance MP Natasha Mazzone that he had ever met or taken instructions from any of the Gupta brothers‚ Gupta associate Salim Essa and any of the Zumas since his appointment as acting chairman.

Economic Freedom Fighters MP Marshall Dlamini‚ after grilling Khoza‚ dismissed the Eskom board as useless. Khoza repeatedly said he did not know or could not recall details that Dlamini asked him about.

Khoza denied that he sent State Security Minister Bongani Bongo - when he was an MP - to see the evidence leader of the inquiry‚ Ntuthezelo Vanara‚ to offer him a bribe to withdraw from the inquiry.