South Africa’s official opposition party has demanded that the R17.3 million in bonuses, paid by PetroSA to its top executives be paid back immediately. Also, the Democratic Alliance (DA) party also demanded that the legal opinion which informed the “disastrous payment” must be made public and tabled before Parliament. DA’s demand follows the revelation that the state-owned entity paid eleven executives a total of R17.3 million in bonuses.
BuzzSouthAfrica gathered that the bonuses were paid out based on a legal opinion which stated that “affordability would not qualify as a justifiable reason to not pay the bonuses”. Thus, the bonuses were paid despite not being approved by PetroSA’s board.
To the DA, it is disturbing that the legal opinion was obtained by Head of legal services, Mokgaetsi Sebothoma, who reportedly received a massive R2.4 million payout.
With that, the party stated: “The payment of bonuses to executives comes at a time when the state oil company recorded an immense loss of R14.5 billion due to a number of disastrous projects and failure to meet key targets. In light of austerity measures and the fact that PetroSA staff members have not received bonuses for two years, it is manifestly unfair for executives, many of whom have overseen failed projects and have not met targets, to received millions in bonuses.
We cannot afford a culture in state-owned entities where poor decisions and lack of accountability by top executives are rewarded with the payment of astronomical bonuses.” Not long past, DA alleged that the ruling party (ANC) used its majority to keep PetroSA Forensic Audit Report away from the public.
The party further alleged that the ANC and its cadres are doing their utmost to evade accountability for the colossal losses at PetroSA.