When ratings agency Moody’s put SA on review for a downgrade in early April, it cited lack of progress with state-owned enterprises as one of its concerns. The agency, which has to report back on its review by July at the latest, said it would be looking closely at prospects for "reforms to enhance transparency, accountability and good governance in the SOE sector". One wonders what Moody’s thinks now — and whether it will even be that long before it goes ahead with a downgrade. After the Eskom board’s bizarre decision to reinstate former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe, the only question can surely be whether Moody’s will opt for one notch or two. A one-notch downgrade would keep SA on the edge of investment grade: two notches would junk its foreign and local currency ratings, with frightening implications. The imminence of a Moody’s downgrade is but one of the red flags raised by the Eskom board’s shock decision, news of which initially had South Africans consulting their calendars to chec...

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