Michelle Phillips' simple task is to save the South African economy ...

29 Feb 2024
Michelle Phillips

Please find attached a soundbite by Dr Mimmy Gondwe MP.

Despite brazen attempts by the ANC’s cadre deployment committee to hijack the recruitment process for the new Transnet CEO, the DA notes the eventual appointment of the Board-preferred candidate Michelle Phillips to the post. Phillips has the herculean task of turning around an entity in deep crisis and as a result, saving the South African economy.

Transnet rail and port failures are posing a significant threat to the country’s export sector, with independent estimates placing the collective economic cost at R1 billion a day. In order to stop the bleeding and restore confidence in the SOE, Philipps has to prioritise public and private partnerships to improve efficiency and unlock private sector investment.

The DA calls on Phillips to in the next few days publicly share her Transnet turnaround plan. She needs to win the confidence of all stakeholders and secure their buy-in if she is to bring Transnet back on track and restore the entity’s financial health.

For his part, the Minister of Public Enterprises – Pravin Gordhan, should give Phillips the space to do her job without political interference. Gone are the days when he regularly interfered in operational matters at SOEs, compromising corporate governance principles and undermining the executive authorities at these entities.

The DA stands ready to give Phillips all the support that she needs in her new role but we will not hesitate to raise our objections should it become clear that Transnet is going down the wrong path.

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