The Board of the SA Maritime Safety Authority (Samsa) has vowed to undertake a thorough forensic investigation into a range of serious allegations against three executives who were suspended on April 26.
The three suspended senior managers are chief operating officer (COO) and former acting chief executive, Sobantu Tilayi; chief human capital officer (CHCO), Lesego Mashishi; and company secretary, Moyahabo Raphadu. They have been suspended on full pay.
“These suspensions are necessary to ensure that the board investigations are efficient and free of any potential interference in order to be completed within a reasonable time frame,” a spokesman said.
Based on the findings and recommendations of the forensic investigation appropriate action will be taken.
The board has however stressed that the suspensions are precautionary and that the decision was based on “whistle-blowing and reports of alleged misconduct received from external and internal stakeholders”.
In the meantime four management members have been appointed to temporarily fill the three executive positions.
Vusi September, current head of corporate affairs, government, and international relations, has been appointed acting chief human capital officer. Shelorne Muller, currently the assistant company secretary, will take over temporarily as company secretary.
The position of COO meanwhile will be managed consecutively by Captain Vernon Keller, currently the deputy COO, and Ian Calvert, current executive manager: marine special projects.
The shared responsibility for the COO post sees Capt Keller taking over with effect from May 1 to June 30 and thereafter passing the baton to Calvert through to the end of August.
The board’s action comes barely two months after the secondment of a senior department of transport official, Tsepiso Taoana-Mashiloane, as Samsa’s new acting chief executive officer, replacing Tilayi who had held the acting position since 2016.
Her appointment followed a few months after the appointment of a new board at Samsa by Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula, in the second half of 2020.
Leading the Samsa board is Nthato Minyuku.