The Democratic Alliance’s Natasha Mazzone has, once again, slammed Minister of Public Enterprises, Lynne Brown. Eskom remains in the spotlight.
The Democratic Alliance’s Shadow Minister of Public Enterprises Natasha Mazzone has become quite a political “big name” over the last few months. Her grilling of Lynne Brown during the Eskom inquiry gathered particular attention. Now, even more Eskom shockers have been revealed.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Mazzone explained that an answer from Brown to a parliamentary question has revealed her department owes “over R1.532 billion to its suppliers”.
Additionally, a total of 61 063 invoices have not been paid within the prescribed 30 days after an invoice has been submitted.
Mazzone said the main culprits of this were Denel, Transnet and ESKOM, that owe an “appalling” R688 million, R728 million and R102 million respectively.
“It is increasingly evident that under the stewardship of the Minister of Public Enterprises, Lynne Brown, South Africa’s state-owned entities are in crisis.”
“The shocking figures point to nothing other than a complete lack of oversight at National level and gross mismanagement at the entity level, both spearheaded by the Minister. This failure has a direct consequence for small businesses which deal with the Department as they are worst affected, often facing closure as a result of by late payments by government departments.”
The DA will now write to the Chairperson of the Public Enterprises Committee to invite Entity heads and the Department of Public Enterprises to account before the Committee for late payments and “to provide concrete steps to remedy the crisis”.
Mazzone concluded the statement by saying the failure of SA’s state-owned enterprises “must be placed squarely at the feet of Brown”.
“Under her watch our state-owned entities have disintegrated due to corruption and gross mismanagement – it is now our duty to act decisively to rescue them from further ruin.”
With the ANC having elected Cyril Ramaphosa as its new president, there are many South Africans hoping that President Zuma could be recalled before 2019. Any recall would almost certainly mean a cabinet reshuffle. Therefore Lynne Brown could be counting down the days as her ministerial job could be set to come to an end.
While the SOE’s crumble, we will all have to wait and see what Ramaphosa will do and more importantly, what his opponents in the ANC allow him to do.