In­quiry at risk of be­ing a ‘kan­ga­roo court’, says Brown

Daily Dispatch - - News - By BIANCA CA­PA­ZO­RIO

PUB­LIC en­ter­prises Min­is­ter Lynne Brown has said par­lia­ment’s in­quiry into state cap­ture runs the risk of be­com­ing a “kan­ga­roo court” af­ter it heard tes­ti­mony that she was a liar, an “atro­cious min­is­ter” and re­spon­si­ble for the prob­lems in Eskom.

Eskom board spokesman Khu­lani Qoma did not hold back as he tes­ti­fied in the pub­lic en­ter­prises com­mit­tee in­quiry on Tues­day that Brown was sur­rounded by cap­tured in­di­vid­u­als but tried to con­vince peo­ple that she her­self was not.

“Min­is­ter Brown has gone to the end of the world telling us she is not wet, but she is right in the midst of wa­ter. Her DG is cap­tured, her PA is cap­tured, ob­vi­ously her lover has in­ter­ests at Eskom. “Min­is­ter Brown lies, she lies all the time and she thinks we can’t see it. He added: “This Min­is­ter needs to sit here and ac­count be­cause this mess would not have been pos­si­ble if she was a ca­pa­ble min­is­ter.”

He de­tailed how ear­lier this year, fol­low­ing se­vere dam­age to Eskom’s cor­po­rate im­age, for­mer board chair­man Dr Ben Ngubane “came close to sus­pend­ing act­ing CEO Mat­shela Koko” but said he was stopped at the eleventh hour by Brown. Qoma said that on the day in ques­tion, Koko had been called back to Eskom and Ngubane had met with the board to dis­cuss his sus­pen­sion. How­ever, “Mr [Zethemba] Khoza told me that he snuck out and made a call to a G-brother – which I un­der­stood to mean a Gupta brother”.

He said the Gup­tas had called Brown, who called Ngubane and halted the sus­pen­sion.

Qoma said Khoza had told him that “Min­is­ter Brown is cap­tured” and that four new board mem­bers would be ap­pointed by the Gup­tas.

Brown said in her state­ment is­sued af­ter the tes­ti­mony that the in­quiry had to give right of re­sponse to all those im­pli­cated or risk be­com­ing a “kan­ga­roo court”.

In a state­ment is­sued ear­lier in the day, Deputy Pub­lic En­ter­prises Min­is­ter Ben Martins also raised con­cerns about the man­ner in which the hear­ings were be­ing con­ducted.

That state­ment said Brown had writ­ten three let­ters re­gard­ing the in­quiry, rais­ing pro­ce­dural is­sues, “the ev­i­dence leader’s con­flicted role” and his “fail­ure to act eth­i­cally”. This was be­cause tes­ti­mony was al­lowed that im­pli­cated peo­ple with­out ad­vis­ing those peo­ple that they would be im­pli­cated, thereby “vi­o­lat­ing their hu­man dig­nity”.

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