McKinsey doesn’t want tainted money
Consulting firm McKinsey says it will pay back over R1-billion paid to it by Eskom because it doesn’t want “tainted money”.
Senior McKinsey executive David Fine‚ testifying before parliament’s state capture inquiry‚ said the company had entered into a contract with Eskom “in good faith” and had been verbally assured that treasury approvals had been sought.
He said this had turned out not to be the case and Eskom had written to the company to ask for the money back.
Fine said that even if the courts found that the contract between McKinsey and Eskom had been valid “we will give the money back and it’s not because of guilt because I don’t think there is anything for us to be guilty about. But the contract didn’t have treasury approval and we don’t feel we should keep the money.”
He said the money was currently being kept separately and the company’s global partners were in agreement that it should be paid back.
He said the money had not yet been returned “because we want to avoid paying it twice”.
He said the company was hoping for clarity on whom they should pay it to – Eskom or South African citizens.
McKinsey partnered with Regiments Capital and later Trillian on Transnet and Eskom contracts.
However‚ Fine said there were some concerns with the companies‚ among them the demographics of Trillian’s senior management team.
“Eric Wood was a white South African starting a black advisory firm‚” he said.