Eskom explains Mabelane, Khalima reinstatement

Monday, August 21, 2017

Eskom says there is nothing untoward about the suspension and subsequent reappointment of Edwin Mabelane and Charles Khalima.

“There’s nothing untoward about the processes and/or decisions regarding certain employees about whom media reports emerged this week. While we can confirm that suspensions occurred, in line with our procedure on the basis of preliminary precaution with pay and with immediate effect, the affected individuals were called upon to make written representations to motivate why the preliminary decision to suspend should not be made final,” said Eskom’s Group Executive: Human Resources, Elsie Pule.

Speaking on Saturday, Pule said the executives were expected to submit their representations within two working days of receipt of the letter, which they did.

Media reports state that the executives were involved with a procurement deal with Trillian, the company said to have received payments for its contracts with Eskom where it is alleged that little work was done.

Media reported that the executives were reappointed two days later.

“Upon receipt of their representations on 17 August 2017, the respective line managers of these employees, assisted by Human Resources, considered them and in turn decided to lift the preliminary suspensions,” said Pule.

Pule said Mabelane and Khalima could therefore not be procedurally kept away from work. She emphasised that the process followed is in strict compliance with the Eskom Disciplinary Procedure, as well as established labour law principles.

Former acting CEO

When coming to the disciplinary matter against acting former group chief executive Matshela Koko, Pule said Eskom has received a report by both Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr and Nkonki Incorporated.

“As far as the disciplinary matter against Mr Koko is concerned, the report by both Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr and Nkonki Incorporated went through an entire process of edification, as critical documents, presentations and submissions by various parties internally and externally were required in strict accordance with a fair process,” she said.

Among the milestones for the matter were that there has been a board decision to proceed with a disciplinary process and the termination of special leave as well as the intention to suspend, the suspension itself as well as the notification for the hearing and charges among others.

“All these milestones are vital in ensuring a fair outcome, and unfortunately they could not have been achieved without spending some time addressing them,” said Pule.

In July, the power utility announced that it had received a report regarding allegations of impropriety on the former acting group chief executive.

On Saturday, Pule explained that Eskom appreciates the national interest attached to the matter and therefore the utility sought to be extremely meticulous so as to carry aboard the interest of both Eskom and the employee in question.

“I can confirm that we are gone through all the critical hoops and are at a stage when the commencement of the hearing will occur in the short while subject to the tying up of the last loops,” she said. –