NEWS

Brian Molefe's State Capture Testimony: Why We're All Ears

A quick reminder why the former Eskom CEO's testimony before the Parliamentary inquiry into state capture is so important.

21/11/2017 11:47 SAST | Updated 21/11/2017 11:47 SAST
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Former Eskom boss Brian Molefe is expected to face a grilling in Parliament on Tuesday over his alleged ties to the controversial Gupta family and his role in their state capture project.

Molefe and Zola Tsotsi, former chairperson of the Eskom board, are among the witnesses who are expected to testify at the Public Enterprises portfolio committee's inquiry into state capture. The inquiry is currently focused on the power utilities parastatal.

Here's a quick reminder why Molefe's testimony is so important.

Last year, then public protector Thuli Madonsela's so-called "state capture" report highlighted Molefe's apparent close relationship with the Gupta family and how Eskom then allegedly facilitated the Guptas' acquisition of Optimum Coal. Molefe was Eskom CEO at this time.

READ: 7 Things We Need To Remember About Brian Molefe

Shortly aftwerwards at an Eskom media briefing, in a flood of tears no less, Molefe denied his relationship with the Guptas, but he still ended up resigning a week later.

Earlier this year, former Mining Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi, in an interview with investigative journalism team AmaBhungane, detailed how Molefe allegedly played a part in blackmailing him to revoke the mining licences of Glencore, the company that owned Optimum before the Guptas.

Molefe is also said to have been behind Eskom deliberately reneging on its agreement to renegotiate its contract to supply the Hendrina power station with coal, resulting in losses that forced Glencore to eventually sell Optimum, to the Guptas.

READ: The Rise And Fall And Rise Again Of Brian Molefe

Molefe returned to Eskom in May this year apparently in order to resolve issues with an alleged R30 million golden handshake he received upon his resignation last year. The ANC ended up forcing Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown to instruct the Eskom board to rescind Molefe's re-appointment.

Most recently, without having any experience in the military, Molefe became a colonel in the South African National Defence Force and is apparently drawing an annual salary of more than half a million rand.