Suspended Eskom group executive Matshela Koko’s disciplinary hearing is being conducted in a fair and transparent manner, says Eskom.
On Wednesday, the power utility said it had noted with great concern some media reports that have suggested that Koko’s disciplinary hearing has collapsed, with the entire process being a farce with a predetermined outcome.
“Eskom wishes to unequivocally state that this disciplinary hearing is being conducted in a fair, professional and transparent manner, with the media being granted permission to attend a matter that would ordinarily be treated as an internal matter,” said Eskom’s Interim chairperson Zethembe Khoza.
Khoza said the chairperson of the hearing and evidence leaders from both parties are competent and independent professionals, who belong to highly regulated organisations that would take a dim view of any misconduct by any of their members.
In July, the power utility announced that it had received a report regarding allegations of impropriety against Koko.
The power utility said it was regrettable that the events of 20 October, where Eskom’s previous evidence leader was involved in an altercation with a journalist, have overshadowed the integrity of the disciplinary enquiry.
The utility then took immediate action and replaced the former evidence leader in order to protect the sanctity of the hearing and to maintain the independence and freedom of expression of the media, as enshrined in the Constitution.
Eskom also expressed concern about allegations that have been made regarding the witnesses who have declined to testify in the proceedings.
The current evidence leader, Eskon said, was duly instructed to do all that was necessary to obtain the attendance of all the identified witnesses. Some witnesses have chosen to decline the request based on legal advice they received from their lawyers.
“Eskom accordingly has had no option but to continue with the hearing in the absence of these witnesses and to close its case on 25 November 2017. Accordingly, Mr Koko will be testifying in his defence on Thursday, 30 November 2017 at 9am,” said Khoza.