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Brian Molefe could face the bite of Gerrie Nel over pension millions

Public Protector: We're not fighting with Gordhan, we want to help him clear his name


Brian Molefe could face the bite of Gerrie Nel over pension millions

Brian Molefe’s legal woes could get worse if advocate Gerrie Nel mounts a private prosecution case against him over his golden handshake if Solidarity has its way.

“What he did at Eskom is rather clear-cut fraud to us,” Connie Mulder, the head of Solidarity’s research institute, told Fin24. 

The former Eskom director is currently in a last-ditch legal bid at the Constitutional Court to keep his controversial pension benefit amounting to R30m.

This after the Pretoria High Court and the Supreme Court of Appeal both ruled that Molefe was unlawfully awarded the early retirement pension benefit after his resignation from power utility in 2016.

He was given 10 days to pay back about R10m of the R30m that he is believed to have received from the Eskom Pension and Provident Fund.

Solidarity laid criminal charges against Molefe after the high court found that the unlawful pension payout was a deliberate scheme devised by him and Eskom. It also asked the Hawks to investigate Eskom’s management hierarchy for allegedly failing to disclose unlawful activities.

“We haven’t heard anything about the criminal charges and that is part of the frustration because we are not aware of any steps that are being taken at the moment,” said Mulder.

He said turning to AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit, which Nel heads, will put pressure on the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

“We are of course threatening the NPA to start prosecuting Molefe for fraud otherwise we are going to try to do it ourselves.”

Mulder said Solidarity has mentioned to AfriForum the prosecution in “initial conversations but obviously there is a whole process that needs to be followed”.

Molefe told Fin24 that he was not aware of Solidarity’s threat.

‘I don’t know anything about it’

“I am hearing about this for the first time. I don’t know anything about it. I don’t know what the basis is for whatever they are trying to do.”

Asked for his views on his Constitution Court application, Molefe said “I can’t comment on it as it is before the court.”

Solidarity expressed the Constitutional Court will uphold the judgment.

“We have won in every single court thus far so we are quite confident,” Mulder said.

Fin24 has reached out to AfriForum’s Ernst Roets and will add his comment once received.

Solidarity’s planned move against Molefe is part of what it has called a “lawful tax protest” campaign, which would include legal actions against state-owned enterprises.

It also intends to bring an application to place cash-strapped SAA under business rescue.

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