Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba, who has come in for stiff criticism over his handling of recent board changes at Eskom and Denel, reported on Tuesday that Transnet chairperson Mafika Mkwanazi remained in his position, as did his fellow nonexecutive directors at the freight logistics group.
Gigaba appointed Mkwanazi, who previously worked as an executive at Transnet, on December 8 last year.
The Minister met with Mkwanazi in Cape Town following speculation that Cabinet had discussed, but rejected, a proposed replacement for Mkwanazi, as well as some of Transnet’s other nonexecutive directors.
Speculation was fuelled by the release of a post-Cabinet statement last week in which major changes were confirmed for the Eskom and Denel boards, including the appointment of Mkwanazi as a nonexecutive director at Eskom.
It was given further impetus by a Department of Public Enterprises statement which indicated that proposed changes to the Transnet board had been deferred by Cabinet for further discussion.
However, the joint Gigaba-Mkwanazi statement did not deny the discussions. It stressed only that Mkwanazi remained chairperson “until or unless Cabinet decides otherwise”, while expressing regret that “Cabinet discussions were leaked to the media”.
“The process of seeking better ways of running State-owned enterprises (SoEs) and strengthening their boards continues and Cabinet will in its time determine the future composition of other SoE boards, including that of Transnet,” the statement read.
It added that Mkwanazi would be inaugurated as a nonexecutive director of Eskom once “all due processes have been followed”.