More confusion over Telkom future

Telkom’s future is still up in the air after a cabinet spokesperson admitted that the telecommunication firm has not yet been discussed by the most senior level of government.

More than a month has passed since the original deadline for the Department of Communications (DoC) to present a list of options concerning Telkom’s future to cabinet.

Having blocked a deal between Telkom and Korea based KT Corp in June, cabinet asked the minister of communications, Dina Pule, to report back to it about all the options that were available for Telkom, in three months.

Last month, the DoC confirmed that a shortlist of three strategic options for Telkom had been presented to cabinet on Wednesday (19 September).

In the statement, the DoC said that Pule and the Inter-Minesterial committee have worked “very hard” with government officials to distill the list of options down to three.

However, cabinet said it did not discuss Telkom’s fate at that meeting on the 19th.

Cabinet spokesperson, Phumla Williams told BusinessTech on Friday (5 October) that, to date, options surrounding Telkom’s future have not yet been tabled before cabinet.

“Phone me after Wednesday (10 October – the next scheduled cabinet meeting), maybe something will come up at the meeting,” Williams said.

Last month, Telkom advised that its headline earnings per share from continuing operations for the six months ending September 2012 was expected to be at least 65% lower than the prior comparative period.

HEPS from continuing operations for the six months ended September 2011 stood at 191.7 cents, 35.5% lower than in 2010.

Government owns 38.9% of Telkom — 51% if the Public Investment Corporation’s (PIC) stake is included.

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More confusion over Telkom future