Sasol executive Priscillah Mabelane has been named chair of Eskom’s National Transmission company.
- Power utility Eskom announced the board of its new transmission company on Tuesday, with Sasol executive Priscillah Mabelane set to preside.
- The National Transmission Company of SA is part of Eskom’s partition into three entities and is the first to achieve legal separation.
- The other board members have extensive experience spanning numerous industries and disciplines, while two existing Eskom board members have been appointed as well.
- For more financial news, go to the News24 Business front page.
Executive vice president of Sasol’s energy business Priscillah Mabelane has been named the first chair of the board of the National Transmission Company of South Africa (NTCSA).
The appointment of the NTCSA board constitutes one of the most important pillars of Eskom’s legal separation into three entities, namely generation, distribution and transmission. This is key aspect of Eskom’s turnaround plan, the utility said in a statement, with transmission the first division to achieve legal separation.
The NTCSA is already registered and has received approval for the requisite licences from the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA).
Mabelane has been leading Sasol’s plan to lead the Just Energy Transition in southern Africa and to unlock SA’s potential to be a global green hydrogen and derivatives player. She is a chartered accountant with experience in leadership, corporate finance, strategy, energy, and risk, the group said. At Sasol, she is responsible for upstream and downstream gas activities as well as distribution, marketing and sales of liquid fuels in Southern Africa.
The other board appointments are:
- Brian Armstrong as lead independent director. Armstrong is an ICT expert who joined the Wits Business School in 2017 as professor in the chair of digital business. He was the former group chief operating officer and chief commercial officer of partly state-owned Telkom.
- Lungile Mashele, an energy economist with more than 12 years of experience in SA. Mashele is currently an energy and Infrastructure specialist at the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and has also worked at Eskom and at the Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA).
- Carmen le Grange, the former CFO of state-owned arms manufacturer Denel. Le Grange is a chartered accountant with 22 years of experience in auditing and consulting in the accounting profession and was previously a Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).
- Anu Sing, a former executive with Africa’s largest mobile operator MTN. Sing has more than 25 years of experience at a board and executive level, Eskom said. She has had successful careers as an investment banker, engineer and in telecommunications, and led the setup of MTN GlobalConnect, the telecom group’s wholesale business.
- Nkosinathi Solomon, a chemical engineer who also has an MBA. Solomon has sound board level experience, specifically related to leadership and governance and good understanding of the energy landscape, the utility said.
- Mark Swilling, who chaired the Development Bank of Southern Africa until September 2023. Swilling is the co-director of the Centre for Sustainability Transitions at Stellenbosch University, and his primary research focus is on societal transitions within the wider discipline of sustainability science and governance. This is with a particular focus on urban sustainability.
- Auke Lont, who has 25 years of energy industry experience. He was the CEO of Norway’s Statnett, the country’s state-owned power grid operator, and understands the South African electricity market reform context, the utility said.
- Francis Petersen, the vice chancellor of the University of the Free State. An engineer by training, Petersen was formerly the deputy vice-chancellor of the University of Cape Town and was also previously the head of strategy and planning at Anglo American Platinum.
- Sedzani Mudau, the chair of state-owned digital infrastructure company Sentech. Mudau is a licensed business rescue practitioner and turnaround specialist and has served in management and executive roles in the private and public sectors for over 19 years. She served as the CFO of the Export Credit Insurance Corporation of South Africa for approximately seven years, where she maintained clean audits, the utility said. That state-owned company provides export credit and foreign investment insurance cover on behalf of the government and underwrites loans.
- Busisiwe Vilakazi, a current Eskom non-executive board member who holds a doctorate in engineering science from the University of Oxford. Vilakazi is the head of research and innovation at the State Information and Technology Agency (SITA) and a former senior researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Vilakazi has experience and skills in ICT research and innovation, data science and analytics, strategy, as well as digital transformation, Eskom said.
- Tryphosa Ramano, also a current Eskom board member and a chartered accountant. Ramano has extensive corporate experience, having served as CFO of both SA’s biggest cement maker PPC and of South African Airways.
“The appointment of NTCSA Board takes Eskom a step closer to unlocking the potential that comes with the planned transformation of the electricity industry,” Eskom board chair Mteto Nyati said in the statement.
“We thank all the individuals who raised their hands to guide Eskom into a future where South Africans have reliable, affordable and environmentally friendly supply of power.”