Ben Ngubane. Picture: FREDDY MAVUNDA
Ben Ngubane. Picture: FREDDY MAVUNDA

Eskom board chairman Ben Ngubane has resigned with immediate effect, Public Enterprise Minister Lynne Brown announced late on Monday night.

Ngubane tendered his resignation on Monday.

Brown said she had appointed Zethembe Khoza as acting chairman until she could take new board appointments to Cabinet for approval.

Ngubane has been linked to the controversial Gupta family.

Leaked emails recently showed that associates and business partners of the family appeared to have drafted the first public statement issued by Ngubane when he became acting chairman of Eskom two years ago.

Ngubane was announcing the departure of his predecessor, Zola Tsotsi, forced to resign by the utility’s board in the wake of his handling of the suspension of four senior Eskom executives in March 2015.

Ngubane was also a co-director with Gupta associate Salim Essa of natural resources exploration company Gade Oil and Gas.

Brown on Monday said she had accepted Ngubane’s resignation.

It is not clear if Ngubane’s resignation is linked to the revelations in the leaked emails.

“I would like to thank Dr Ngubane for his contribution to turning Eskom around since the load shedding days of 2014-15, and wish him well in the future,” she said in a statement.

This comes as the Eskom board was forced to rescind the reappointment of CE Brian Molefe earlier this month, as direted by Brown.

Molefe has turned to the Labour Court to fight this.

He has left Eskom twice in six months — once voluntarily and once under duress.

Brown has also indicated that she is considering replacing the board when the utility convenes its AGM later this month.

The AGM is set to take place later this month.

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