Ramaphosa cannot respond to ‘rumours’ of corruptors – spokesperson says ahead of Cabinet reshuffle

1st March 2023 By: Thabi Shomolekae - Creamer Media Senior Research Assistant and Reporter

Ramaphosa cannot respond to ‘rumours’ of corruptors – spokesperson says ahead of Cabinet reshuffle

President Cyril Ramaphosa

The Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya said on Wednesday that President Cyril Ramaphosa cannot respond to rumours and generic suggestions regarding individuals allegedly involved in corrupt activities at Eskom.

Ramaphosa is instead urging people to take information on corruption to law enforcement agencies so that it can be fully investigated.

On Tuesday, Ramaphosa broke his silence over an interview given by former Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter, saying he should have gone to any of the country’s law enforcement institutions with the information he purports to have.

Last week De Ruyter raised serious allegations against an unnamed senior African National Congress (ANC) politician in a television interview in relation to corruption at Eskom.

Political parties, unions and the public have since asked De Ruyter to name and shame the implicated Minister, after he publicly announced that there were Ministers involved in corruption at Eskom.

“Law enforcement agencies now operate independently, investigate without any fear or favour, so anybody who has information that could assist in curbing the levels of corruption at Eskom is urged to take that information to law enforcement agencies so that it can be fully investigated,” said Magwenya.

He said it was public knowledge that Eskom had been in the grip of criminal syndicates operating inside and outside of the utility.

He explained that the President had been on record to express his concerns about corruption at Eskom and other criminality at the entity in the form of diluted quality coal, theft of spares, sabotage, fraud and corruption.

“What Andre has said is nothing new to the extent that we know that there is corruption at Eskom, more importantly government has responded to that level of criminality that exists within Eskom through a multi-disciplinary task team that has been deployed to Eskom through the NATJOINTS. That team includes all law enforcement agencies,” said Magwenya.

He noted that Ramaphosa did not have the names of the ANC politicians allegedly involved in the corruption at Eskom and, therefore, he could not factor that in his Cabinet reshuffle.

Meanwhile, Magwenya said there was a sense of urgency in the appointment of the Minister of Electricity, saying in a matter of days the announcement would be made.

Ramaphosa announced during his State of the Nation Address last month that the new Minister would assume full responsibility for overseeing all aspects of the electricity crisis response.

The Minister will be responsible for driving the various actions being coordinated by the National Energy Crisis Committee to urgently end loadshedding.