Police deny probing politicians for corruption at Eskom

Police officials have stated that they are not investigating any politician as part of their ongoing probe into the alleged corruption at Eskom.

This after former Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter claimed in a televised interview in February that a senior politician was involved in corruption at the state-owned power utility.

When asked to name and shame the politician during his appearance before parliament’s standing committee on public accounts in April, De Ruyter declined to name the politician, stating that he referred the matter to Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

On Tuesday, MPs obligated law-enforcement authorities including the police and the Hawks to address the allegations.

In response, national police commissioner General Fannie Masemola stated that De Ruyter did not report any politician for being involved in corruption during their meetings, and Hawks head Lieutenant-General Godfrey Lebeya confirmed that there were no ongoing investigations into politicians’ involvement in Eskom corruption.

The police officials appeared before the parliamentary committee to provide more information on allegations made by De Ruyter and other investigations.

“I am not aware, but I will allow General Lebeya to respond on that,” said Masemola, to which Lebeya responded by saying: “With regards to the investigations of the politicians, relating to Eskom matters, we do not have.”

The committee also heard that following De Ruyter’s explosive interview, the Hawks reportedly tried to reach out to him, but he did not cooperate.

Lebeya revealed that the police had approached De Ruyter through the provincial head of the Hawks in Mpumalanga, Major-General Gerber, to gather information first-hand.

However, De Ruyter declined to meet with Gerber and referred him to his lawyer, who promised to revert to the police but did not fulfill the promise.

“The DPCI [directorate for priority crimes investigation], through Major-General Gerber, the provincial head in Mpumalanga, reached out to Mr De Ruyter immediately after his media interview to ascertain the information first-hand,” said Lebeya.

“Mr De Ruyter declined to meet Major-General Gerber but referred him to his lawyer Willem Janse van Rensburg, who promised to talk to Mr De Ruyter and revert to the DPCI. Unfortunately, the promise was not fulfilled.”

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