The call for the president to appoint a commission of inquiry by the Women’s league to probe internal and external forces working to derail transformation at SAA raises more questions than it meets the eye in my view. Unless the league takes the nation into confidence of what they know concerning the happenings at the national carrier warranting an investigation, particularly by the commission of enquiry appointed by the board as opposed to the investigation by the board as the authority in terms of law.

It is also noteworthy that the league does not or at least one is not aware of what led to the call for such investigation, except the use of a buzz word “transformation” as the reason. The question that needs to be posed also is whether the board in its annual report stated the transformation objectives it wanted to achieve for the period under review, or whether it succeeded or failed in achieving those objectives and the reasons which led to the board not achieving them. ( Whether there are internal and external forces that derailed the board in that regard and who are the forces?).

Another area of concern is what informed the women’s league to isolate SAA for investigation and not Eskom, Prasa, Denel, Petrosa, Transnet to mention but a few. Does it mean transformation in these SOCs is going very well?The other question that arises is whether the transformation referred to by the women’s league is what everybody else understand it to be, particularly the board themselves.

Own view is that if  the women’s league is really concerned about transformation, though one does not know what it involves in terms of the league’s understanding or definition , it has to call and investigation in all SOCs and government departments including the presidency.

The call by the Ethekhwini ANC youth league for the minister of Finance to resign equally raises questions than answers., and I guess the public cannot be fooled into believing that it is an innocent call by a concerned organ of civil society. This is the same organisation that sang praises for the disgraced erstwhile COO of SABC and invited him to their gathering. Flowing from the shenanigans at the SABC, who should be fired between the minister of Finance and that of Communications?

Again it raises a question of what is understood by transformation or failing to transform. Transformation in cannot be defined outside the strategic plans of organisations it seeks to transform and both the leagues must perform a gap analysis of what these organisations intended to achieve in terms of their strategic plans and the current realities and the gaps thereof. This kind of exercise will not even warrant an investigation or a commission of inquiry as there is a baseline and facts will speak for themselves. The parliamentary oversight, if sharp enough can also pick up problems if any in their interaction with boards of SOCs.

One regards the calls by the leagues as abuse of proximity to the president and one will be surprised if the president can accede to their call.

One may be tempted to agree fully with the leagues if they were saying investigate all SOCs and government departments ,and fire all ministers responsible if the investigations so warrant.

Written by: Pat Maisela ka Mdluli,
Proponent of Ethical Leadership and Good Corporate Governance with particular interest in Government and State Owned Companies

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