Eskom begins damage control after Business Leadership SA suspension
The power utility has requested a meeting with BLSA — while Transnet, also suspended over corruption allegations, claims it left voluntarily
Eskom interim CEO Johnny Dladla has asked Business Leadership SA (BLSA) for a meeting to tackle issues of concern and agree on a way forward after the organisation suspended the power utility and Transnet.
BLSA cited a stand against corruption for the suspensions.
Eskom and Transnet join KPMG, which has also been suspended from BLSA. Suspension entails considerable reputational damage as suspended companies are excluded from the business forum, which represents 80 leading companies in the country.
Transnet said it did not renew its membership because of cost-cutting measures and the meeting that BLSA CEO Bonang Mohale claimed took place to discuss allegations of corruption at the logistics parastatal had never happened.
BLSA said the suspension of Eskom and Transnet followed engagement with the two companies "in connection with extensive allegations of corrupt behaviour over a long period".
Mohale said Eskom represented a systemic risk to the economy because of its multiple governance and operational failures and a stretched balance sheet. "Until and unless a nonconflicted, experienced and permanent chairman and board are appointed — who in turn appoint an experienced and honest executive team — Eskom will loom large over the economy as a threat to stability...."
Transnet spokesman Molatwane Likhethe took a different line, saying BLSA approached Transnet early in 2017 requesting it to consider renewing its membership for the year. Transnet elected not to renew the membership and communicated this in August.
Transnet received a meeting request from Mohale to discuss the cancellation but it did not take place because of diary clashes, said Likhethe.