Transnet: Gama is out

Transnet Freight Rail chief executive Siyabonga Gama was “summarily dismissed” on Tuesday.

This was in line with the recommendations by the independent chairperson of a disciplinary committee that found him guilty of misconduct, Transnet said in a statement.

Gama’s employment at Transnet Freight Rail was terminated with immediate effect and he was served with notice of his dismissal on Tuesday afternoon.

This paved the way for the company to make permanent appointments instead of the acting posts necessitated by Gama’s suspension.

“The closure of this matter enables Transnet’s top management to focus exclusively on the running of the business,” it said.

Gama was dismissed after he was found guilty of all charges of misconduct brought against him. They included one “of an irretrievable breakdown in his relationship with Transnet”. It was added during the disciplinary hearing and was a result of “sustained public attacks” by Gama through his attorney on the company’s board and executive.

The other charges related to two procurement contracts signed under Gama’s watch—one for security services and the other for the refurbishment of 50 trains.

Gama was suspended late last year to face charges relating to the allocation of the refurbishing contract to Sibanye Trade Services, which allegedly lacked experience.

Gama, who only had authority to sign off on contracts valued at less than R10-million, allegedly awarded a R19-million contract to a security firm with alleged links to Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda.

An application to have his suspension lifted was dismissed with costs by the high court in Johannesburg in October last year.—Sapa

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