EFF call Gordhan, De Ruyter ‘Indian and white supremacists’ after Scopa no-show
EFF: "The Indian and white supremacists who are crippling our national assets undermined the oversight role of Parliament."
Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture – Citizen Stock
The EFF has condemned Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter for failing to attend a critical meeting with the Standing Committee on Public Accounts. (Scopa)
On Wednesday, members of Parliament’s finance watchdog Scopa had slammed Eskom and Gordhan for missing the meeting and not taking parliament seriously.
Gordhan had informed the committee before it started that he was unable to attend due to another meeting in the private sector. The meeting was to, among other things, get clarity on contract deviations and expansions by the parastatal.
“In an exhibition of their combined ethnic-chauvinism, the Indian and white supremacists who are crippling our national assets undermined the oversight role of Parliament, by not attending a SCOPA meeting where they were meant to account on deviations and expansions of contracts by Eskom,” said the EFF in a statement.
Eskom put forward 11 deviation requests for the first two quarters of the 2021/2022 financial year. These are essentially requested to deviate from normal procurement processes.
“The entity made 28 expansion requests during the same period. “
“An expansion basically means that an entity can expand and extend existing contracts rather than request new bids from potential suppliers to perform the work,” said the EFF.
Only three of the requested deviations, and four expansions were not approved, and the rest, costing billions of Rands, were approved, while others had been approved conditionally.
“This means that Eskom could do what it wanted to do, and appoint contractors they wanted without following normal procurement procedures and that they could expand contracts of those they are close with, without opening up the space for new entrants to the industry,” said the party.
The party said Eskom was effectively able to use deviations to hire mostly white contractors.
“Gordhan and De Ruyter ran away from accounting for these procurement blunders, which easily amount to fraud,” said the party.
Gordhan’s strategy to sell off parts of state-owned enterprises that had been plundered into financial ruin has been met with scathing criticism from the EFF and some unions.
The party is known for attacking Gordhan and labeling him a racist, despite supporting him during their “Zuma Must Fall” campaign.
In 2019, the red berets stormed the podium in parliament where Gordhan was delivering a speech. They had raised countless points of order as Gordhan tried to speak. Parliamentry protection services removed the EFF MPs before the confrontation could escalate.
The party said De Ruyter and Gordhan owed the public an explanation because of the ongoing power crisis.
The EFF is now demanding both Gordhan and De Ruyter set a new date with Scopa in the near future.