Eskom blatantly lied about Trillian payments, ignored consultants’ red flags

JOHANNESBURG — Month-by-month, Eskom continues to live up to its reputation of being one of South Africa’s worst-run companies. Today, it emerged that the company lied about claiming that a payment to Trillian and McKinsey was above board. Of course, it was clear to everybody that this payment wasn’t above board. And it was clear to a group of consultants at Oliver Wyman as well. What’s subsequently emerged is that Eskom lied about Oliver Wyman having given the green light to the transactions. In fact, Oliver Wyman did exactly the opposite. Another day, another Zupta scandal. – Gareth van Zyl

Press release from the DA:

By Natasha Mazzone*

The DA has noted Eskom’s sudden U-turn today after it initially claimed that the R1.6 billion paid to the Gupta-linked Trillian and McKinsey was above board back in June this year.

Electricity pylons carry high voltage power lines from the Hendrina power station, operated by Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., in Middelburg, South Africa on April 13, 2016. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

The fact is that Eskom defended these payments and stated that everything was above board following an investigation by Global consultancy, Oliver Wyman, in June.

It has now been revealed that Oliver Wyman not only warned against the approval of these payments, but had actually red flagged these payments, stating that Eskom needed to conduct a legal review of all contracts.

The DA will write to the Acting Public Enterprises Committee Chairperson, Ms Zukiswa Ranthoto, to ask that she urgently ensure Eskom hands over the report by Oliver Wyman to Parliament for scrutiny.

It is now apparent that Eskom procured the services of Oliver Wyman. Yet, when the advice was not in favour of the Guptas, they blatantly chose to ignore it.

It is unacceptable that Eskom thought they could get away with this lie for so long.

The DA will ensure that all those responsible for this will be held to account at Parliament’s upcoming Eskom Inquiry.

Under the toxic influence of the seemingly Gupta-captured Eskom leadership, the power utility has floundered from one corruption scandal to another and enough is enough.

  • Mazzone is a an MP and DA Shadow Minister of Public Enterprises.
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