Phumzile Tshelane. Picture: SUPPLIED
Phumzile Tshelane. Picture: SUPPLIED

South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) CEO Phumzile Tshelane has had his contract extended by three years.

The Cabinet announced the decision on Friday.

Tshelane had been on a month-to-month contract for the past year, "due to a difference of opinion with the previous board in 2015", Necsa said.

Necsa experienced governance troubles before Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson appointed a new chairman and board members in March 2016.

Necsa failed to submit annual financial statements to Parliament in 2015‚ due to disagreements between Necsa and the auditor-general over financial provisions for nuclear decommissioning‚ but all financial statements were submitted to Parliament on time in 2016.

The differences of opinion with the auditor-general had been resolved‚ Necsa said in a statement on Friday.

The Cabinet endorsed Tshelane’s reappointment on the recommendation of the Necsa board.

Necsa chairman Kelvin Kemm said: "I am really pleased the Cabinet has endorsed our recommendation. Tshelane‚ a nuclear physicist‚ has had many years of experience in the nuclear field and also in the wider electricity landscape.

"He has also demonstrated superior management skills in a complex environment. My board is confident in its selection of Tshelane to serve an additional three years as CEO of Necsa."

Necsa has an extensive international footprint and is planning to expand its international business.

Kemm said: "As the second-largest market shareholder in the world for nuclear medicine‚ which we export to over 60 countries‚ our international dealings are extremely important. We are also expanding nuclear technology exports‚ and mutual technology developments‚ with a number of countries.

"Tshelane already has extensive international experience in the field and his business perspective and international reach is well-respected in many countries. The Necsa board considers this to be most important."

Kemm added: "With the international expansion currently taking place in nuclear development‚ Necsa is positioning itself to take advantage of both the domestic and international business opportunities which are evident. The Necsa remuneration structure‚ across the board‚ is being adjusted to reflect the importance of every member of staff having a personal focus on financial profitability."

Business Day reported earlier this year that Tshelane told members of Parliament’s energy portfolio committee during a briefing on Necsa’s annual reports for 2014-15 and 2015-16 that whereas in the past, Necsa had derived 50% of its income from the government and 50% from external sales‚ the split had shifted to 35% and 65%‚ respectively. The grant had been cut by R66m over the past two years.

Last year the corporation made a net operating loss‚ prompting concerns by the auditor-general as to its going concern status‚ because operating performance is regarded as a key determinant of this.

A bottom line profit of R327m was‚ however‚ made in 2015-16 on revenue of R2bn.

TMG Digital

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