Some of the CEOs who have left South African compa
Some of the CEOs who have left South African companies the past year. From left: Former Eskom CEO Phakamani Hadebe, former Absa CEO Maria Ramos, former TymeBank CEO Sandile Shabalala, former Old Mutual CEO Peter Moyo.
  • At least eight major South African companies are currently without a CEO. 
  • Several vacancies are set to be filled by the end of October when the former CEOs notice periods come to an end. 
  • For more stories, go to Business Insider SA.

A number of large South African companies - including at least five state-owned enterprises - are looking for new chief executive officers (CEOs).

This follows a slew of resignations and disciplinary cases which have left several companies with interim CEOs, or without any CEOs. 

Many of the vacancies are set to be filled within the next three months when the notice periods of their former CEOs come to an end. 

Business Insider South Africa made a list of all the major South African companies currently looking for new CEOs and where replacements have not yet been announced. 

Brand South Africa 

Kingsley Makhubela was suspended as Brand SA CEO in April 2018 after sexual harassment allegations surfaced.  He was cleared of sexual harassment in October 2018, but is facing three new charges, which he has described as a "witch hunt". Thembi Kunene-Msimang was appointed interim CEO but was absent from the position for most of the year after breaking her ankle at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January.

Absa Bank 

Former CEO Maria Ramos retired without a successor from Absa Bank in February after nearly a decade at the bank. René van Wyk was appointed as the interim CEO. Absa said it will announce a new CEO by the end of August. 

Tourism South Africa 

The board of Tourism South Africa suspended Sisa Ntshona in April after receiving anonymous tip-offs about unnamed allegations. The board said it suspended Ntshona to conduct a fair investigation into the accusations. Sthembiso Dlamini was appointed as acting CEO.


The Nuclear Energy Corporation of South Africa (Necsa) has been without a CEO since May when Phumzile Tshelane was fired after being found guilty of misconduct. Tshelane was found guilty of, among others, having signed a nuclear cooperation agreement with Russia without the approval of then energy Minister Jeff Radebe.


Phakamani Hadebe resigned as Eskom CEO in May. The former Land Bank CEO said he resigned because the position held “unimaginable demands” which had a which negative impact on his health. State-owned Eskom is in the process of being unbundled by the department of public enterprises. Hadebe is set to leave the embattled power utility at the end of July 2019.


South African Airlines (SAA) CEO Vuyani Jarana resigned in June. In his resignation letter, Jarana complained about the uncertainty surrounding funding and the slow pace of decision-making which were delaying the airline's turnaround strategy. Jarana agreed to serve until the end of August. The National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa), the largest trade union in South Africa, has called for Jarana to be reinstated. 

Old Mutual 

Old Mutual suspended and then fired CEO Peter Moyo in June over an argument about his involvement in an investment holding company. The board blamed a breakdown in trust and confidence for his dismissal. But in court papers, Moyo said he was let go before he objected to the board about the "improper non-disclosure of a payment amounting to millions of rand, which was paid by Old Mutual in respect of [chair Trevor Manuel's] legal fees for his much-publicised legal battle relating to the Guptas and their associates". Moyo wants to be reinstated.  


TymeBank CEO Sandile Shabalala resigned due to “personal reasons” at the end of June after serving in the position for three years. TymeBank launched in February and is on track to have 500,000 clients by the end of July, but requires roughly 1.8 million clients to break even. 

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