The office of the African National Congress Chief Whip on Wednesday moved to address concerns about the fairness of the parliamentary inquiry into state capture at South Africa’s power utility, Eskom which is currently underway in Parliament in Cape Town.
On Tuesday, Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown, who has come under fire from individuals testifying before MPs, labelled the committee conducting the probe a “kangaroo court”, this after the now suspended spokesman for the Eskom board, Khulani Qoma, slammed Brown.
Qomo told MPs that Brown blocked the removal of Matshela Koko as acting chief executive, allegedly on instruction from the politically-connected Gupta family and their associates.
In a statement, the office of the ANC chief whip said: “We have been assured by the committee on Public Enterprises that all individuals mentioned, accused or implicated by any testimony during the inquiry will be afforded an opportunity to tell their side of the story. In fact, the committee is already communicating with various parties inviting them to appear before the inquiry.
“The ANC chief whip shares the sentiments expressed by ANC MP, comrade Dr Zukile Luyenge, in today’s committee meeting that the attacks on the evidence leader of the inquiry are unwarranted, misplaced, unfair and must be condemned.
“As the evidence leader, Adv. Mthuthuzeli Vanara is acting at the behest of the committee and is doing work he has been tasked with as an employee of the institution. The singling out of a parliamentary employee who is acting on behalf of a committee goes against the grain of parliament’s oversight role.
“Our objective as parliament through this inquiry is to unearth any wrongdoing at our public entity and to ensure that those implicated are held accountable. We therefore encourage anyone with information which could assist the inquiry to come forward,” concluded the office of the chief whip.