Markus Jooste’s fables
Ex-Steinhoff boss Markus Jooste came to parliament well prepared to obfuscate and deflect blame from himself for the retailer’s collapse, but enough emerged for the Hawks to start circling. Will they?
As Steinhoff’s disgraced CEO Markus Jooste was leaving parliament last week after a three-hour grilling, there was a moment few noticed. A member of the Federation of Unions of SA (Fedusa) walked up and shouted in his ear: "How do you feel? We lost billions because of you, how do you feel? And you come here and act as if nothing is wrong. You must be ashamed of yourself." Jooste, as he has done for months, set his jaw and ignored the taunt — as he ignored the throng of journalists asking how it felt to lose R3bn of his own money, the value of his Steinhoff shares that went up in smoke. At that stage, the civil servants who belonged to Fedusa had lost plenty. Having bought Steinhoff shares worth R5.7bn, they’d seen that stock tumble to R667m. Speaking to the FM last week, Fedusa general secretary Dennis George said: "Jooste doesn’t want to take responsibility. When you’re the CEO the buck has to stop somewhere. For him to try to put the blame on someone else is totally unacceptable."...