POLL | Will a new Eskom board fix the energy crisis?
While SA continues to battle rolling blackouts, the cabinet is reportedly discussing a new board at power utility Eskom.
Well-placed sources told the Sunday Times talks were taking place between the presidency and the public enterprises department, and are expected to be finalised this week.
President Cyril Ramaphosa hinted about looming changes when he said in a Heritage Day address he would “speak soon” about reforms.
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter told the Sunday Times he would welcome a stronger board as pressure on directors had grown in the aftermath of resignations.
While some said a change would bring fresh ideas and solutions to the problem, others believe the problem is bigger than tinkling with the board.
There have been several calls for De Ruyter and other executives to step aside or be axed, with the EFF saying they had warned about the current board.
“The incompetence and arrogance of Eskom executives has plunged SA into perpetual and unwarranted darkness that is killing businesses and livelihoods. The collapse of Eskom and the failure to prove a dependable and consistent energy supply are meant to render the country’s electricity utility redundant and useless.
“We call for the firing of the board, CEO and COO, knowing very well [President] Cyril Ramaphosa’s cowardice will not allow him to take decisive steps,” it said.
De Ruyter said he does not deserve the pressure he is under, claiming he had inherited a mess. “I would have had peace with the pressure I am under if I deserved it. This is a mess I inherited,” he said.
He said claims he was “trying to bring apartheid back” by only hiring white people were untrue, and said he only wanted the best person for the job.
“It is like your house burning and your neighbour brings his hosepipe but you wave him away saying, ‘That is a green hosepipe, I prefer a blue one’.”
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