Brian Molefe. Picture: ALON SKUY
Brian Molefe. Picture: ALON SKUY

It is the end of the road for former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe, who will now have to cough up about R11m in pension payments, after the Constitutional Court dismissed his application for leave to appeal an order that he repay the money. 

This comes as Molefe is also facing an almost R80m lawsuit from Transnet, which is trying to recover money lost through dubious dealings and malfeasance connected to state capture. 

Molefe has now lost four appeals in court in a bid not pay back the pension payments, which were unlawfully paid to him by Eskom’s pension fund.

In 2018 Molefe approached the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein in a bid to overturn a high court ruling ordering him to repay the money. In October, the court dismissed his application with costs.

He then lodged a special appeal with the judge president of the Supreme Court of Appeal, which in April 2019 was also dismissed.

Molefe then approached the Constitutional Court.

The Constitutional Court, in its order dated July 29, said the application for leave to appeal should be dismissed as it “does not engage this court’s jurisdiction, and in any event bears no reasonable prospects of success”.

The application was dismissed with costs.

Trade union Solidarity said it would now institute immediate action to ensure that the money is paid back to the power utility. 

Solidarity COO Dirk Hermann said the Constitutional Court judgment paved the way for the union to proceed with criminal proceedings against Molefe. 

“As Solidarity is getting no response from the National Prosecuting Authority, we have already initiated discussions with advocate Gerrie Nel about possible private prosecution,” he said.

Nel resigned from the NPA in January 2017 to head lobby group AfriForum’s new private prosecuting unit. Solidarity is an affiliate of AfriForum.

In April 2018, the high court in Pretoria dismissed Molefe’s application for leave to appeal against a ruling that he pay back part of his “unlawful” pension payout and the costs for counsel in the legal battle.

The high court found he was unlawfully awarded a R30m early retirement pension benefit by the Eskom Pension and Provident Fund after his resignation from Eskom in 2016.

It also dismissed his application to be reinstated as CEO of Eskom, from which he claimed he had never resigned as the agreement that necessitated his departure from Eskom was dependent on his eligibility for early retirement.

quintalg@businesslive.co.za