Suspended Transnet execs could face criminal charges‚ warns Popo Molefe

Transnet board chairman Popo Molefe has indicated that criminal and civil actions may have to be pursued against beleaguered chief executive Siyabonga Gama and two others who were this week served with letters of intention to suspend.

Molefe was on Friday explaining to members of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on the board’s decision to furnish Gama‚ chief procurement officer Thamsanqa Jiyane and supply chain manager Lindiwe Mdletshe with suspension notices.

He said this was part of the internal disciplinary process on individuals implicated in transgressions related to state capture.

But Mofele added that the suspension notice was not the end‚ as the Transnet legal team was working on establishing whether criminal or civil actions – or both – should be preferred against the three.

“Our lawyers are working on possible criminal action that could be pursued fairly soon and to find out if there was criminal intent by these senior people implicated in transgressions‚” said Molefe.

“There could be criminal action and a measure of civil action‚” he added.

Molefe said the civil route would be more challenging as it would be “difficult to recoup billions from individuals”.

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