Business Maverick


Dan Marokane expected to be appointed as new Eskom CEO

Dan Marokane expected to be appointed as new Eskom CEO
Dan Morokane, who previously served as Eskom’s head of group capital and is currently CEO of troubled sugar producer Tongaat Hulett. (Photo: Gallo Images / Financial Mail / Trevor Samson)

Dan Marokane is expected to be appointed as the new chief executive officer of state power utility Eskom Holdings after an almost yearlong search for a candidate, according to people familiar with the decision.

The company’s failure to boost generation from its old and poorly maintained power plants has led to nationwide electricity outages — implemented to prevent a total collapse of the grid. The worsening situation has weighed on a process to fill the top job at Eskom, which has had 14 leaders since 2007.

“The process is with the shareholder to finalise and make the decision,” said Eskom spokesperson Daphne Mokwena. She referred further questions to the government, which hasn’t made any formal announcement on the appointment.

Ellis Mnyandu, a spokesperson for the Department of Public Enterprises, declined to comment.

Marokane, who previously served as Eskom’s head of group capital and is currently CEO of troubled sugar producer Tongaat Hulett, will have to begin the process of reviving the foundering utility months before South Africa votes in national elections.

The energy crisis — the central bank has said that rolling blackouts may have reduced the economic growth rate by as much as 3.2 percentage points last year — may in part result in the governing ANC see its support slip to as low at 45% next year, according to one survey.

Companies — reeling from rolling blackouts and inefficiencies at the state-run logistics firm — have been slashing jobs to keep costs under control.

André de Ruyter said he would resign as CEO in December last year and quit the beleaguered company following a television interview in which he said that Eskom was losing about R1-billion a month to corruption and theft that could be connected to government officials and politicians. Calib Cassim, the company’s chief financial officer, has been the interim head since De Ruyter left.

In September, the search for De Ruyter’s successor raised tension between the board of Eskom — which reported a R23.9-billion net loss for the past financial year — and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan, who oversees the company.

A month later, Mpho Makwana resigned as chairman of Eskom. He was replaced by Mteto Nyati, a former MTN Group executive and ex-chief executive officer of Altron.


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Geoff Coles says:

    Was he the original choice by Eskom Board?

  • Shaun Slayer says:

    Suspended Eskom Executive Steps Down Amid Probe Into Business. June 1, 2015. Marokane negotiated with Eskom and settled for a R6m exit package. Now he’s back as CEO. hehe………

  • Bob Kuhn says:

    A second bite at the ever-ready anc golden hand shake resignation package scheme?

  • David Pennington says:

    He’s just ruined Tongaat Hulett so let’s put him in charge of Eksdom what could go wrong?

  • Eugene Van As says:

    No comment

  • Iam Fedup says:

    I see nothing in his description that demonstrates that he is actually capable of managing Eskom. Indeed, if his CV includes the fact that he is CEO of a failing Tongaat, heaven help us. Of course, in the eyes of the ANC, his most important qualification is that he has the right skin colour, and he has a record of wheedling millions from us taxpayers in the past. Sadly, Mteti has had zero impact, even though it is claimed that he was successful in the private sector. There is only one solution, and it’s the same for SAA, railways, post office, and everything else these imbeciles have touched. Let real businessmen/women who are accountable to customers and shareholders run them. As the old saying goes, lead, follow, or get out of the bloody way.

    • Willem Boshoff says:

      The only way out of this mess is to privatise and open up the electricity generation market. I don’t think there’s a business person on planet earth that can rescue the cancer infested Eskom in it’s current configuration.

      • Iam Fedup says:

        Willem, you are right, but I would extend it to just about every “business” that the ANC has destroyed, right down to the SAFCOL forests and the fisheries.

  • Dennis Bailey says:

    Sad. Just very sad, sad, sad news. And bad.

  • Rae Earl says:

    The ANC merry-go-round. Replace useless people with more useless people and when they screw up give them a pile of money to leave and make place for the next incompetent comrade. Sickening.

    • Philip Machanick says:

      A lesson ANC has learnt from the Catholic Church.

      If a priest is exposed as a pedophile, send them to another parish where they can start over.

  • Geoff Coles says:

    What sort of background does he have…. previously Head of Capital suggests financial….and I thought the positi9n wanted Technical of some sort

  • John P says:

    He at least seems to be qualified
    BSc Chem Eng, MSc Pet Eng, DIC, MBA plus 20 years in related industry

  • Richard Robinson says:

    As I shareholder of Tongaat Hulett, I observe that he drove TH deeper into the dirt, is that what our country needs him to do at Eskom?

  • Honesty Jongile says:

    Eskom should look for a highly qualified and experienced technical person, preferably an electrical engineer, with a proven track record for its GCEO position…….even calling from retirement such a person. No cadre deployment and appointment through patronage!

  • Roy Hamlyn says:

    Again? Cadre deployment ???

  • Charles Govender says:

    @John P. Having the academic qualifications does not mean you can get the job done. It’s like with the law, having a law degree and knowing it, is one thing, but interpreting the law is the real macoy.

  • dylan smith says:

    Hahahahahahaha, that is the anc at its best

  • Middle aged Mike says:

    I hope this captain has an inflatable desk chair as the Titanic is well on its way to the bottom. Am I the only one who could give a fig about who is appointed to the position by the mandarins in the ‘sharholders’ deployment committee? It seems as meaningful as who’s appointed minister of electricity to my mind.

  • Calvin Billett says:

    I hope I’m wrong but he doesn’t look like a “raakvat” type of guy. More like a stooge to perpetuate the govt continued plunder of the once highly respected Eskom

  • Michael Thomlinson says:

    I think the problem is that the ANC government has simply made us all incredibly cynical. We don’t believe a word that comes out of an ANC poticician’s mouth and any major move is just seen as a money making racket for the connected comrades. So, the appointment of Dan Marokane is seen with a great deal of skepticism. Is he really cabale and strong enough to do the job? Maybe he can prove himself worthy, who knows? But I have doubts – I think he is another ANC stooge ready to facilitate more feeding.

  • Winston Bigsby says:

    Marokane, who previously served as Eskom’s head of group capital and is currently CEO of troubled sugar producer Tongaat Hulett, will have to begin the process of reviving the foundering utility.
    What? He was in charge of Group Capital at Eskom – they’ve posted a 23.9B loss. Yes Beelyon!
    Do they know that it takes 11 days, 13 hrs & 46 mins to count to a million? 31 years, 251 days, 6 hrs and 50 mins to count to a Beelyon! FFS! They throw these numbers around like it grows on trees!
    Current CEO of troubled Tongaat-Hulett. So no accountability for the Elite Comrades again?
    Directors have fiduciary duties to shareholders. But not in SA.
    So many fwits to choose from, we are spoiled for choice.,

  • Winston Bigsby says:

    And its taken a year to find this paragon.. -))))))

  • Winston Bigsby says:

    Another Comrade Cadre to resign with a golden parachute? This is the new ANC sausage factory!
    Another supremely incapable demagogue to do as he’s told.
    At least he’ll get nearly a year in before they’re voted out? Sorry Mr Taxpayer, we have to squeeze the last out of the Golden Goose before the poor thing expires!

  • Lesley Young says:

    Hahahahahaha and they do it again!

  • Willem Boshoff says:

    Rather disappointing to see these negative, knee-jerk comments. Mr Marokane did not ruin Tongaat-Hulett (go look at the fraud charge sheet), and he was in the Zuma-Gupta cabal’s crosshairs for being a stumbling block to their state capture operations according to Zondo. I doubt that he (or anyone else for that matter) can turn Eskom around, but he deserves our support until proven incapable.

  • Alec Zitha says:

    Some of the are a bit disappointing, when the previous CEO was appointed most people said let’s give him a chance but this one is already written off before he could even start

  • Cunningham Ngcukana says:

    The problem with Eskom is its multifaceted nature, the extractive empowerment that had made Eskom its focus, the quality of its management and the interfering political leadership of the country. Dan Marokane was at PetroSA when it imploded to the nothing it is today as a chemical engineer. He was overlooked at Eskom for Matona who was also removed under very strange circumstances and his removal formed part of the Zondo Commission inquiry. He took a package in 2015 and all the time Pravin Gordhan has been in the Cabinet of Zuma. He is coming from a broken company whose value has been destroyed just like de Ruyter. He might have been part of Eskom before, but that does not give him the qualifications to lead Eskom. He is also coming at a time when Eskom is being broken up into three companies, that would be responsible for generation, transmission and distribution with ill defined income streams for transmission that is said will be recovered from the end users just like the distribution. We are going to be seeing more increases in electricity and a lot of those who can afford going off grid. Its existence is very much in question with the convoluted approach that government is taking on Eskom driven by various interests including corruption and an eye on elections. There is no well thought out future of Eskom that is understandable except for lies from the government. We are going to be watching him in the difficult job he has tsken.

  • P C Hem says:

    No one can save Eskon, because the theft, incompetence and corruption that are destroying it are too deeply ingrained into its culture and the fabric of other government organisations. It will continue to disintegrate as anarchy flourishes. We are seeing this across South Africa at every level.

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