Minister Joemat-Pettersson Jetsets While Petrosa Suffers R15 Billion Loss

By Pieter Van Dalen

I will today write to the Chairperson of Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Energy, Fikile Majola, to request that he summon the Minister of Energy, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, to appear before committee and account for the deplorable state of government-owned petroleum oil and gas corporation, PetroSA.

This follows reports today which confirm that PetroSA will suffer a staggering R14.9 billion loss for the 2014-15 year, making it the biggest annual loss incurred by any state-owned company. The embattled entity is also set to miss all but one of its performance targets for the 2014-15 year.

The poor financial state of PetroSA has been known for some time now. The DA last month called for the release of PetroSA's financial statements in order to interrogate the financial chaos at the entity. This call was ignored by PetroSA's acting CEO, Mapula Modipa.

Instead of dealing with the entities falling apart at the seams on her watch, Minister Joemat-Pettersson is jet-setting around the world in her relentless crusade to tie our country to a secretive multi-billion rand nuclear deal. This is simply unacceptable and the Minister must be brought to book on this dereliction of duty.

PetroSA cannot be allowed to follow the likes of other SOE's such as Eskom, SAA and SAPO, and degenerate into a financial black hole. The entity squandered R7.6 billion last year alone in terms of wasteful and irregular expenditure - a clear illustration of the internal disarray within the entity and its leadership structure.

The Minister must therefore appear before Parliament in order to give a full briefing on PetroSA's finances, to disclose the entity's financial statements, and to present a thorough turnaround strategy for the ailing entity.

The DA believes that every cent of taxpayers' money ought to be spent appropriately and in the best interests of all South Africans. Political accountability must follow when this is not the case.

Pieter van Dalen Shadow Deputy Minister of Energy.