SCOPA Chair Hlengwa Says Sorry To Eskom Board Member Busisiwe Mavuso

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Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) MP Mkhuleko Hlengwa the chairperson of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) on Tuesday apologised for the manner he dealt with Eskom board member Busisiwe Mavuso.

Hlengwa said: “I wish to express an apology to Ms. Mavuso; which I will convey to her in due course. I accept that the situation could have been handled better”.

On Friday Mavuso walked out of a meeting with SCOPA after a heated argument with Hlengwa.

Before Mavuso, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Business Leadership South Africa and a Board Member of both Eskom and Business Unity SA, left she said she was not prepared to be the “fall guy” for Eskom’s historical woes that had been caused by the African National Congress-led government.,

Hlengwa, who previously stood his ground on the matter in which he described Mavuso’s behaviour as “theatrics” offered his apology after he met the IFP National Executive Committee (NEC) on Monday.

“The IFP NEC requested a briefing from me on the set of circumstances which characterised the SCOPA meeting with the Eskom Board on Friday, 22 April 2022, with particular focus to the interaction with Board Member Ms Busisiwe Mavuso,” said the SCOPA chair.

“I briefed the NEC accordingly.”

He added: “Whilst the NEC has accepted my explanation and upholds that the rules of Parliament were correctly invoked insofar as the construct of SCOPA is concerned, the party asked me to reflect on the manner in which these rules were applied, and to give due regard to how Ms. Mavuso may have felt, considering the sentiments she expressed on Radio 702 on Monday, 25 April 2022.”

Mavuso told the radio station that she felt she had been “treated like a 10-year-old child”.

“I have done this. Accordingly, I wish to express an apology to Ms Mavuso; which I will convey to her in due course. I accept that the situation could have been handled better,” said Hlengwa.

“I thank the IFP NEC for its guidance on this matter.

“I have noted the DA’s filing of a complaint against me with the Speaker of the National Assembly, and I look forward to appearing before the Powers and Privileges Committee, should I be called upon to do so.

“While my exchange with Eskom during the SCOPA meeting escalated in the manner that it did, it was an exercise of my responsibility as chairperson to caution against attempts to draw SCOPA into partisan politicking in the discharge of its work.”

He said boards and executives of all State-Owned Entities have a fiduciary responsibility in law.

The board of directors of Eskom are the Accounting Authority of Eskom and thus carry the burden of responsibility and accountability.

“Oversight and accountability are often uncomfortable, especially when so much is wrong in the country, but they are a necessary exercise of our constitutional and democratic dispensation,” said Hlengwa.

“Those who hold office through election, appointment or deployment must accept that they will be held accountable for how they exercise their duties, and for the performance of their respective entities.”