Brown wants Eskom to answer Treasury’s Gupta questions ‘today’ not September

Lynne Brown. Picture: Business Times
Lynne Brown. Picture: Business Times

Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown says she has asked Eskom to submit its response to a request by the National Treasury on its probe into contracts Eskom has with Gupta family-owned Tegeta Exploration & Resources.

Eskom and the National Treasury have been in a war of words since Monday on whether or not Eskom has been cooperating with the department.

The finance department said its efforts to investigate the contracts with Eskom had met resistance from the parastatal‚ while Eskom countered that it had been cooperating.

Brown‚ who is the shareholder representative in charge of six state-owned entities‚ including Eskom‚ told Talk Radio 702 on Tuesday that she had requested Eskom to respond to a 172-page document that the National Treasury had prepared.

“Eskom was going to have a board meeting in September. I have asked them not to have a board meeting but hand the response over to the Treasury today. I really believe Treasury and ourselves should meet and talk about how to resolve this matter‚” Brown said.

Eskom on Monday said it had compiled a response to the National Treasury’s report and the responses were due to be tabled for consideration by the Eskom board in September.

“I have called the chair and the chief executive and said I know letters that have to come to me must first come to the board. I said they must release the report to Treasury‚” Brown said.

She said she did not have access to information about specific contracts signed by Eskom.

“I have asked Eskom‚ as soon as they have concluded the response to the 172-page document to Treasury‚ I would have sight over that report. If there is any untoward action‚ we have to act on it.”

When asked whether she knew whether or not advance payments were made by Eskom to Tegeta‚ Brown said‚ like everybody else‚ she did not have the details of Eskom’s operations.

Brown said as soon as the Treasury started investigations into the coal contracts‚ she stepped back.

“I will act on what the department (of finance) has found.”

She said the operational matters were between Eskom and the board.

“I appoint the board to ensure they see to the day-to-day operations of the company.”

In terms of ‘did you pay company a R10-million?’…that will not be information available to me.” — TMG Digital




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