Business 16.8.2018 07:20 am

Transnet CEO given notice of suspension for ‘wrongfully obtaining his MBA’ amid R38bn locomotive probe

Transnet group CEO Siyabonga Gama, speaking during a press conference in Johannesburg.

Transnet group CEO Siyabonga Gama, speaking during a press conference in Johannesburg.

Siyabonga Gama and two others need to provide reasons to the board by Monday for why they should not be suspended.

The Board of Transnet has served letters of intention to place on precautionary suspension three senior employees, its CEO Siyabonga Gama, as well as chief procurement officer Thamsanqa Jiyane and supply chain manager Lindiwe Mdletshe.

The notices were served on Wednesday.

In a statement on Thursday confirming media reports yesterday, Transnet said reports from Werksmans Attorneys, Mncedisi Ndlovu & Sedumedi Attorneys and Fundudzi Forensic Investigators had revealed various acts of possible misconduct against the three.

“These reports recommended further investigations to be conducted to establish the extent of the misconduct. The Transnet Board therefore contemplated placing the employees on precautionary suspension until the finalisation of the further investigations and disciplinary enquiries.”

They said misconduct identified include contraventions of the constitution, the Public Finance Management Act as well as company laws and the parastatal’s own procurement policies.

They said there were allegations that Gama “wrongfully obtained his MBA with the help of a service provider to Transnet”.

Gama has been at Transnet for 24 years in various managerial positions.

It’s understood the numerous breaches of policy and law relate to Transnet’s questionable procurement of more than 1,000 locomotives at a cost of more than R38 billion. That tender is part of the ongoing state capture investigation by the Hawks.

“In view of the seriousness of the alleged transgressions, the Transnet Board is concerned that the continued presence of the three employees, given their seniority and influence might interfere with and jeopardise the investigation.”

They have until the close of business on Monday to make written submissions on why they should not be suspended.

 

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