Former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe – until recently an ANC member of Parliament – will this week argue that the ruling party usurped the power of a cabinet minister in having him summarily dismissed from Eskom.
It is the ANC, not public enterprises minister Lynne Brown or the Eskom board, that really wanted him kicked out as CEO, Molefe says in heads of argument now before the Labour Court in Johannesburg, where he is due to ask for his (most recent) removal as CEO to be overturned.
And that, says the man accused of being at the heart of state capture, is political interference in the running of a state-owned enterprise.
“While the minister [Brown] has the exclusive power to appoint and remove the group chief executive of Eskom, the ANC appropriated that right,” counsel for Molefe says in a written summary of his argument.
The assertion, due to be argued on Tuesday and Wednesday, further complicates an already convoluted set of arguments.
None of the four parties involved now dispute the basic facts of Molefe’s extraordinary departure, return, and departure again from Eskom. On what those facts mean in law, however, the parties do not see eye to eye – in particular whether he was dismissed or not.
Molefe resigned from Eskom in November 2015, say arguments before the court on behalf of Brown.