The Democratic Alliance says reports that the National Treasury is trying to force the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) to commit to providing R100-billion to bail out the numerous struggling state-owned enterprises‚ including R12-billion for South African Airways (SAA)‚ are disturbing.
The PIC oversees the biggest fund in Africa‚ managing some R1.9-trillion in assets mainly belonging to the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF).
“While the DA has repeatedly warned of this possibility in particular for the SAA bailout‚ these reports confirm the possibility that the Minister and Deputy Minister of Finance‚ Malusi Gigaba and Sfiso Buthelezi‚ who is also the Chairperson of the PIC‚ are planning a raid on the pensions of millions of hard-working government employees and pensioners.
“It is therefore deeply concerning that there is also allegedly a plot to remove the PIC’s current CEO‚ Dan Matjila‚ which was reportedly a greedy attempt by the Gupta’s to hi-jack the PIC and loot from the people of our country‚” said DA deputy spokesman on finance Alf Lees.
He added that Gigaba was “yet again seemingly at the centre of a push to put the pensions of millions of government employees at risk‚ and in the process playing the role of the mismanagement and corruption enabler”.
“It seems that‚ given a very open-ended investment mandate given to the PIC by the GEPF‚ the PIC would be able to make billions of rands of pensioners funds available for ‘investments’ in mismanaged SOEs such as SAA without the PIC first getting the go-ahead from the GEPF.
“SAA has had many turnaround strategies in the past which have not worked and the new ‘plan’ feels like déjà vu with Dudu Myeni at the helm of this nightmare. Myeni must go and SAA needs to be put under business rescue so that it can be stabilised and privatised‚” Lees asserted..
“Gigaba must not be allowed to plunder the PIC and the future financial security of government employees just to bail out utterly dysfunctional State-owned Enterprises‚ which have been run into the ground under the ANC‚” he added.