In 2016, the Parties renewed their commitment to the IPPO by entering into a new MoA.
The DBSA’s role under the current MoA is to provide operational support to IPPO, which includes the recruitment and appointment of the IPPO staff whose tenure is linked to that of the MoA; appointment of transaction advisory firms to assist IPPO in the development and evaluation of bids for independent power producers; and other support such as procurement and contracting of offices for IPPO staff and staff travel arrangements.
At the inception of the IPPO, Ms. Karen Breytenbach was seconded to the IPPO by National Treasury where she had previously been appointed as a consultant. In 2016, the DBSA received a request from the DoE to offer Ms. Breytenbach a three-year fixed term employment contract as Head: IPPO. The employment contract was for a fixed term expiring on 28 February 2019. At the expiry of the contract, Ms. Breytenbach had reached the DBSA’s mandatory retirement age of 60.
On 31 January 2019, the DBSA sent Ms. Breytenbach a letter notifying her that her contract will expire through effluxion of time on 28 February 2019. Ms. Breytenbach sent the DBSA a letter on 4 February 2019, acknowledging that her employment contract would indeed expire on 28 February 2019.
The parties to the MoA, DoE, National Treasury and DBSA, agreed that DBSA offer Ms. Breytenbach a fixed term employment contract for a short period from 15 March 2019 to 31 July 2019. This was done in order to complete the recruitment process of the new Head IPPO. Ms. Breytenbach did not accept the offer, and the offer expired on 18 March 2019. Following further engagements amongst the parties, DBSA again offered Ms. Breytenbach a fixed term employment contract on 7 May 2019, which she declined in a letter dated 13 May 2019. Ms. Breytenbach has therefore not been an employee of DBSA since the expiry of her fixed term employment contract on 28 February 2019.
DBSA remains committed to supporting the IPPO. The DBSA has honoured all its obligations under the MoA and has ensured that the principles of good governance have been met to uphold the integrity of the IPPO. In all its dealings with Ms. Breytenbach, the DBSA has acted in good faith and in a professional and transparent manner.
Parties to the MoA, DoE, National Treasury and DBSA, regard the IPPO as a critical institution that must be stabilized in order to continue the great work it has achieved over the years. To this end, the Parties have agreed to immediately appoint an acting Head of the IPPO; recruit and appoint a permanent Head of the IPPO; and explore options to institutionalize the IPPO as a legal entity.
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