While he was an MP in Parliament, Brian Molefe was only considered to be on "unpaid leave" from his position as chief executive of Eskom, the Mail & Guardian reported on Monday evening.
The publication said this was according to affidavits by Molefe and Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown. The affidavits were filed in a high court application by the Democratic Alliance. The party wanted Molefe removed as Eskom chief executive.
Fin24 reported last week that Molefe asked Eskom chairperson Ben Ngubane if he could exercise his early retirement option to shield the woman he was about to marry from the media frenzy following the public protector’s State of Capture report in November 2016. Ngubane stated this on the sidelines of the African Utility Week.
READ: Molefe ‘retired’ to protect new wife from media frenzy – Eskom chair
Brown and the Eskom board will face the portfolio committee on public enterprises on Tuesday regarding the reinstatement of Molefe as chief executive last Monday.
Molefe shed tears during a media conference last year when Eskom first addressed the Public Protector report, which implicated him with the sale of Optimum coal mine from Glencore to Gupta-owned Tegeta. Soon afterwards, he announced he was stepping down to clear his name.
Ngubane said it then became an administrative issue of the Eskom Pension Board. “We were not even aware of the quantum [R30 million pension payout] that was involved.”
However, earlier this year, the Eskom board was ordered to rescind Molefe’s R30 million pension payout after Brown discovered the payout amount in the media. The board’s solution was to bring Molefe back - and he returned to his role on Monday.