Siyabonga Gama, the CE of Transnet Freight Rail, was paid R10-million in salary, bonuses and benefits during his wrangling with the transport parastatal.
Gama was suspended in September 2009, fired in June last year and reinstated this February. He got R10-million without doing any work.
In the 2010 annual report, for the year to March last year, when Gama worked only six months due to his suspension, he got R4.06-million.
That was only marginally less than the R4.1-million Transnet acting CEO Chris Wells got.
Details of Gama's latest package are contained in Transnet's annual report for financial 2011, which public enterprises minister Malusi Gigaba tabled in parliament on Thursday.
The report shows that Gama - who was suspended for eight months from his position as chief executive of Transnet's freight-rail division in September 2009 before being dismissed in June last year - earned more than any other Transnet executive, including Wells, who acted as the state-owned enterprise's chief executive officer during the period in question.
Gama had been dismissed after a prolonged saga that involved the awarding of a lucrative security tender to GNS, a company linked to ANC heavyweight and former communications minister Siphiwe Nyanda.
Siphiwe Nyanda was the Minister of Communications of the Republic of South Africa from 10 May 2009 to 31 October 2010.
General Siphiwe Nyanda SSA SBS CSL DMG MMS MMM (born 1950) is a South African politician, appointed minister of communications in 2009.
He was a South African military commander. He joined Umkhonto weSizwe (MK), the military wing of the African National Congress, in 1974, and served as a field commander during the liberation struggle against the South African government in the 1980s. He was appointed MK Chief of Staff in 1992, and served on the Transitional Executive Council which oversaw the change of government in 1994.
Maj Gen Nyanda transferred to the South African National Defence Force, into which MK was incorporated in 1994, and served successively as Chief of Defence Force Staff (1994-1996), General Officer Commanding Gauteng Command (1996-1997), Deputy Chief of the SANDF (1997-1998), and Chief of the SANDF (1998-2005).
According to the annual report, Gama took home a salary of R8.7-million, R760000 in post-retirement benefits and a further R622000 in other payments and contributions.
Wells earned R4.5-million in salaries and benefits in 2011, less than half the amount Gama pocketed.
Gama was reinstated to his job at Transnet in February this year after board chairman Mafika Mkhwanazi intervened in his running boardroom battles with the previous leadership, which started when former CEO Maria Ramos was still at the helm.
Gama, who is politically well connected, had been tipped for the top job following Ramos's departure, but questions were then raised about his conduct regarding the awarding of the contract to GNS.
Gama was dismissed following an internal disciplinary hearing which found he had acted irregularly in the awarding of an R18.9-million tender to Nyanda's security company.
However, his dismissal was overturned when the Mkhwanazi board decided to reinstate him.
Transnet spokesman Mboniso Sigonyela said on Friday that there was nothing untoward about Gama's multimillion-rand package.
Sigonyela said Transnet was obliged to pay all the monies that were due to Gama, which were backdated to the time of his dismissal, in terms of the reinstatement agreement entered into by the two parties in February.
"It was agreed that he be reinstated with full pay. The remuneration is in terms of the reinstatement agreement which was reached at the level of the board because there was a reversal of dismissal," said Sigonyela.
Themba Langa, Gama's lawyer, declined to comment, saying his client's remuneration details were supposed to remain confidential as part of the reinstatement agreement entered into by Gama and Transnet.
A source close to Gama said it was "mischievous" that details of his financial settlement with the company were being thrown into the public domain.
"This is clearly being done to embarrass him," said the insider, who asked to remain anonymous.
News of Gama's remuneration package has angered labour federation Cosatu, which was opposed to his reinstatement.
Spokesman Patrick Craven said: "Cosatu is shocked at the revelation that somebody, who in our view should not have been reinstated, given the findings of negligence against him, should now be earning such a massive salary as a reward."
Gama, who is known to have close ties with ANC heavyweights, was one of the frontrunners for the position of Transnet CEO, but incumbent Brian Molefe beat him to the job.
During his fights with the ousted Transnet board and executive, Gama was supported publicly by Justice Minister Jeff Radebe and Nyanda.