New power-utility boss hired church buddy
The new acting Eskom CEO, Sean Maritz, right, hired a friend and fellow church member at a salary of about R100 000 a month without declaring their friendship.
The Sunday Times can reveal that in 2010 Maritz, then Eskom’s IT manager, was slapped with a “written warning” for employing his friend Andre Coetzee in the same department on a sixmonth contract.
Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown appointed Maritz on Friday despite being e-mailed documents on September 15 detailing his record of transgressions. Former Eskom chief information officer Virgil Humphrey Rabie said yesterday that he was suspended before he could take action against Maritz. “I was about to charge Sean with six counts for gross Eskom policy transgressions before a disciplinary was instituted against me and I was suspended for a year on bogus charges,” Rabie said. Rabie was dismissed in 2010 for similar transgressions and is appealing his suspension in the Labour Court.
Stephen Lennon, managing director for corporate services, chaired Maritz’s disciplinary inquiry. Lennon wrote: “[In the] recruitment of Mr Andre Coetzee in your department, you failed to declare your relationship with him as provided for in terms of Eskom’s conflict of interest policy. By failing to declare you have contravened the policy”.
After considering all the facts during the disciplinary inquiry, I have decided to give you a sanction of six months’ written warning. You are further warned that any repeat of this misconduct may result in stronger disciplinary action being taken against you.”
In reply to questions from the Sunday Times, Maritz said: “I do not intend to respond to your questions and I reserve my rights to do so should it become necessary.
“I have not had any contact with [his suspended predecessor, Matshela] Koko since he has been on suspension. I reject with contempt the allegations made.”
Two Eskom executives yesterday told the Sunday Times that Maritz allegedly deleted evidence implicating Gupta companies in controversial deals with Eskom.
“Sean deleted electronic information from the server linking [former acting CEO Matshela] Koko to the Guptas, this included Trillian and Tegeta transactions. Koko uses Sean to monitor other Eskom employees,” one of the executives said.