CDC board regrets departure of CEO Pepi Silinga

Outgoing CDC CEO Mninawe (Pepi) Silinga
Outgoing CDC CEO Mninawe (Pepi) Silinga

The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) Board announced that the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Mninawe (Pepi) Silinga, is leaving the CDC and will be joining the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) on 1 October 2020, after being with the CDC for 22 years, since 1998. The Board has accepted his departure with regret.

Mr. Silinga leaves the CDC to join Transnet National Ports Authority [TNPA] as its Chief Executive, a decision that has been long coming after numerous attempts by other State  Owned  Entities (SoEs), who  sought  to  acquire his services as recently as 2019 and even going as far back as the mid 2000’s when an announcement had already been made that he would be joining one of the South Africa’s national public utility.

The 22 year relationship between the CDC and Transnet has been positive, and we believe that with Mr. Silinga at TNPA, this relationship will grow from strength to strength and propel the economic transformational agenda of the Eastern Cape Province.

To this end, there are more than a handful of ground breaking business initiatives that have stalled over the past years due to misalignment between the two entities. These projects are key to the transformation of the Eastern Cape’s economy, which has witnessed its Regional Gross Domestic Product (GDP_R) making minor improvements from R236.1bn (in 2018) to R237.1bn (in 2019) (Constant prices 2010).

Despite the Board’s greatest of difficulty about the CEO’s imminent departure given the immense contribution that he made to the organisation over the past two decades, the organisation wishes to congratulate him on his achievements as the CDC’s Chief Executive officer.

He joined what was then a new “Coega Project” of the Eastern Cape in 1998 and was tasked with an enormous responsibility to establish a leadership team that would develop and operate the then Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ), a challenge he grabbed and performed successfully. Subsequently, the team led by Pepi (as he is commonly known), saw the Coega IDZ being gazetted in the year 2000 under the Government Gazette No. 21803 of 1 December 2000, which was made in terms of the Manufacturing Development Act No. 187 of 1993. Under his tenure as CEO , the Coega Special Economic Zone (SEZ) was gazetted by the former Minister of the then Department of Trade and Industry, Dr. Rob Davies, as per the Government Gazette No. 40883 on 2 June 2017, in terms of section 39(2) of the SEZ Act No. 16 of 2014.

Together with his competent leadership team, Mr. Silinga implemented systems and processes that have ensured good corporate governance in the organisation. During his tenure as CEO, the CDC received unqualified audit opinions by the Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA).

He provided stability in the organisation despite the changes in the leadership of the country and the province. Mr. Silinga’s team has focused on achieving the organisation’s key strategic goals, which include financial sustainability and growth, preferred investment destination, and advance socio-economic development.

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