Pravin Gordhan addressing the media in Tshwane on 31 March 2017.
JOHANNESBURG - New Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan wants South Africa’s state-owned enterprises (SOEs) to be recaptured in order to best serve the interests of the people.
During President Cyril Ramaphosa’s recent Cabinet reshuffle in February, Gordhan was given the unenviable task of turning around ailing parastatals and recovering billions stolen by the architects of state capture.
The minister made the comments on Tuesday ahead of his department’s budget speech in Parliament.
Gordhan, who was fired by former president Jacob Zuma, long fought state capture from the outside.
Now, he is standing in front of ruined SOEs.
It is estimated the architects of state capture stole R100-billion from the country’s economy.
Gordhan wants to get these funds back and bring about a culture of accountability, integrity and expertise.
In the latest wave of clean-ups, Gordhan on Monday fired the remaining Transnet board and appointed an interim board.
Denel Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Zwelakhe Ntshepe resigned on Tuesday for personal reasons.
He had been implicated in the awarding of a R1 million bursary scandal involving the son of embattled North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo.
This was in contravention of the company’s policy.
Public Enterprises Director-General Richard Seleke, accused of being close to the controversial Gupta family, could get the chop by the end of the week.
A forensic probe will also be launched to look into the sale of Alexcor diamonds.
It is also possible that certain questionable transactions of locomotives at Transnet will be suspended or cancelled.
Gordhan called on the decent, hardworking people at Eskom and other SOEs to help him clean out the rot and erase the toxic culture that has eroded the public and private sector.