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'The name is corruption, but the game is procurement': Eskom's Jabu Mabuza

22 February 2019 - 16:42 By AMIL UMRAW
Eskom board chair Jabu Mabuza took to the stand at the state capture commission on February 22 2019.
Eskom board chair Jabu Mabuza took to the stand at the state capture commission on February 22 2019.
Image: Masi Losi

Eskom board chair Jabu Mabuza told the state capture inquiry on Friday that corruption at the power supplier manifested itself within the procurement processes.

"The name is corruption, but the game is procurement," Mabuza told deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo.

Mabuza went on to outline disciplinary action taken against now former Eskom executives Shaun Maritz and Matshela Koko after his board took over in January 2018.

"What we see and what we call 'corruption' is what happens in the procurement of goods and services in the public sector. The real incidents is what happens in the procurement, and we have come to see it in a number of manifestations at Eskom," Mabuza said.

He added that Maritz did not disclose a deal between Eskom and Chinese company Huarong Energy Africa.

Maritz was disciplined on charges related to his approving a payment to a Hong Kong company after Eskom secured a R25bn loan from Huarong Energy Africa‚ as well as for penning a letter to McKinsey & Company absolving it from paying back R1.6bn unlawfully paid to it and Trillian.

Mabuza said he was not surprised that charges brought against Koko by the previous administration at Eskom did not stick.

"We decided we were going to place charges in front of him and a disciplinary process that is not a sham. We picked the four charges that we thought would stick and we presented it to him, and we viewed them seriously enough," Mabuza said.

"Those charges, there's no way they would have stuck. This time we were clear that we would take due process."

Koko was alleged to have breached his fiduciary and statutory duties and responsibilities as acting group chief executive of Eskom in relation to the R600m payment to Gupta-linked company, Trillian.

He also failed to declare a conflict of interest and distributed confidential Eskom documents in November 2015 to people associated with the Gupta family.

The testimony continues.