Former Eskom employee hits back at Koko
A FORMER Eskom employee has hit back at the utility’s suspended chief executive, Matshela Koko, who accused him of corruption.
France Hlakudi‚ former project manager at the Kusile power station‚ claimed in a lawyer’s letter yesterday that parts of Koko’s testimony were incorrect‚ untruthful and defamatory.
Last week‚ Koko alleged that Hlakudi had received a bribe of R61-million from Eskom contractor Tubular Construction Projects.
Koko said TCP paid the money into the bank account of Hlakudi Translation & Interpretation (HTI), belonging to Hlakudi.
Koko made these allegations during his disciplinary hearing. He is facing six charges, including allegedly failing to declare a conflict of interest owing to his stepdaughter owning shares in a company awarded a tender by a division he led.
Hlakudi said the allegations against him were untrue and he believed Koko should have instituted an investigation or disciplinary inquiry if he thought he was guilty.
Koko had also referred to an affidavit by former TCP employee Patrice Tiberi, who said HTI was paid R400 000.
Hlakudi said the payment was unsolicited‚ not a bribe and was used for community development projects.
Koko alleged that Hlakudi paid Nombasa Mawela‚ granddaughter of ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe‚ a “retainer” of R978 000. Hlakudi said he had a business relationship with Mawela going back several years.
Hlakudi claimed Koko intimidated and taunted him and that Koko’s conduct reflected a lack of honesty‚ trustworthiness and integrity.