Kubayi makes her presence known
LINDA ENSOR | 2017-05-03 06:53:36.0
Kubayi said she had instructed the board of the Central Energy Fund, the parent company of the SFF, to take action if possible against those responsible. File photo
Image by: Trevor Samson
Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi will investigate what legal avenues exist to hold former employees accountable for the Strategic Fuel Fund (SFF), which sold the country’s oil reserves.
Kubayi received a report on the sale which, she emphasised, was indeed a sale and not a “rotation of stock” as her predecessor, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, had claimed.
This is the first time the government has admitted it was a sale and not a stock rotation.
In December 2015, 10 million barrels of crude oil were sold secretly by the SFF at a substantial discount to the prevailing market price. The auditor-general declared the sale illegal and former minister Joemat-Pettersson initiated a review of the deal.
Kubayi said she had instructed the board of the Central Energy Fund, the parent company of the SFF, to take action if possible against those responsible. They had acted without the authority of the SFF board.
If they were still employed, she would ensure they were suspended immediately and disciplinary action taken, Kubayi told members of parliament’s energy committee in her first public engagement since taking office.
The minister has instructed the CEF board to secure the country’s strategic oil reserves.
Kubayi said the department would look at the weaknesses in the SFF’s governance model.
With regard to CEF subsidiary PetroSA, “a problem child”, the minister said she was “very concerned” about the state-owned entity and the loss incurred through Project Ikhwezi.
She was concerned about the payment of bonuses, despite executives’ poor performance, and she had picked up a trend of “wrongful doings” within the entity.
Also on the minister’s agenda was to capacitate the National Energy Regulator of SA so it can do its work. The founding legislation for the regulator would be re-examined to strengthen it, she said.
Kubayi said it was problematic that Nersa’s CEO, Chris Forlee, was also a regulator, which she believed had caused problems.
The National Nuclear Regulator would also be strengthened. – BusinessLive