Ben Martins refutes Eskom inquiry claims

Ben Martins refutes Eskom inquiry claims”

The testimony of Eskom's suspended head of legal and compliance, Suzanne Daniels, on Wednesday once again highlighted the manner in which employees who resisted the grip the Guptas exercised over the utility's procurement were forced to leave the company. It felt like I was in a movie.

Daniels described the actions of suspended Eskom chief financial officer Anoj Singh, who tried to dissimulate payments of R1.6 billion to McKinsey and Trillian, as "brazen theft".

When ANC MP Pravin Gordhan warned Daniels in Parliament on Wednesday that there would be denials with attacks on her character, she said it would be her word against theirs.

The suspended head of legal has also told parliamentarians that she's convinced that state capture has taken hold at the parastatal.

Daniels was testifying before the public enterprises committee's inquiry into state capture at Eskom.

She told MPs that she met with Martins, Ajay Gupta, Duduzane Zuma and Gupta associate Salim Essa at a tea party in Johannesburg.

"We went into one of those apartments".

"As we walked into the lounge area, there were four people which I were introduced to [as] Mr Ajay Gupta, Mr Duduzane Zuma and Deputy Minister of Public Enterprises Ben Martins and a Chinese lady whose name I can not remember because at this point I was actually speechless", she said.

Daniels said Ajay Gupta was wearing a grey tracksuit, a T-shirt and no shoes.

She said Gupta, in bare feet and trackpants, asked when the legal challenge to Molefe's R30-million pension payout from Eskom would be heard.

The court application relates to Molefe's bid to have the Labour Court overturn Eskom's decision to rescind his reappointment.

She then named the Eskom executives allegedly implicated.

"The gist of what I could gather, he was saying he would have to talk to someone in the deputy judge president's office and to make sure that the hearing takes place after December 2017".

Witness after witness has told Parliament's Public Enterprises portfolio committee that Eskom did not get value for the money it paid Trillian.

She accused Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown and the Eskom board of not acting against the irregularities she addressed in a comprehensive report submitted to both.

Daniels said she was surprised to find herself in that situation and admits she was a bit afraid.

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