Fuel reserves: DA to escalate investigation to PP – Pieter Van Dalen

Party says taxpayers will bear the brunt of the losses following illegal sale of 10 million barrels of fuel

Fuel reserves: DA to escalate investigation to Public Protector 

27 May 2016

The DA is awaiting response from the Auditor General (AG) regarding the full list of names involved in the illegal sale of fuel reserves by Minister of Energy, Mrs Joemat-Pettersson and CEO of the Central Energy Fund (CEF), Mr S Gumede who contravened section 54(2d) of the PFMA by not consulting Treasury on the transaction.

We can confirm that we will be laying criminal charges against all counterparts involved including the Minister and the CEF CEO in this illegal sell-off of critical state apparatus. Upon receiving the AG’s response to our initial request for a probe into this, we will further approach the Public Protector, if need be.

Today’s Business Day has revealed that the CEF CEO is expecting fuel prices to dip below $28 per barrel, which is an irrational and non-evidenced statement as current prices are at $50 per barrel and with continued undersupply at the moment, this price is destined to rise according to market analysts.

This means that taxpayers will bear the brunt of the losses that will follow this illegal sale of 10 million barrels of fuel belonging to the Strategic Fuel Fund (SFF).

Even more problematic is the glaring evidence that this sale was done so rapidly and without any consideration of Treasury in order to benefit the coffers of the ANC ahead of the local government elections.  According to Business Day the sale is connected with Thebe Investment Corporation, the ANC linked investment arm. 

Vitol is the company that has allegedly bought the fuel stock. In the meantime, Burgan Cape Terminals has just been awarded a 20-year lease by Transnet in Cape Town Harbour for the development of the fuel storage and distribution facility.  Companies will ‘rent’ space from Burgan for storage of their fuel product. Vitol is partnering Burgan in the deal to build storage tanks along with Thebe Investments. The fuel was sold privately to a company that is partnering with an ANC affiliated corporation.  The dots are connecting.

We will ensure that all counterparts involved in this illegal sale are held accountable and brought to book. The DA will continue to fight for tax payers money to be used in areas of crime prevention, job creation and service delivery to all instead of lining the pockets of the few.

Issued by Pieter Van Dalen, DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Energy, 27 May 2016