Ramaphosa Says Full Support Is Owed To Eskom

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Rolling blackouts have plagued South Africa for the last few weeks and despite the current reprieve, sudden outages could plunge the country into darkness again.

 


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President Cyril Ramaphosa acknowledged the damage caused by loadshedding to the economy while compounding the hardships facing many households in the county. However, despite the recent power cuts, he believes progress is being made by Eskom.

“It is difficult to expect the millions of South Africans grappling with the inconvenience and hardship caused by intermittent power outages to remain patient as we resolve these longstanding challenges. It is difficult to convince them, as they sit in the dark, that we are making progress towards a secure and reliable supply of electricity” explained the president.

Ramaphosa says that despite the challenges faced by the country, Eskom is owed the nation's full support. He said they are doing their best to keep our ageing plants running and supply the electricity the country needs.

He assures South Africans that everything in their means is being done to ensure that loadshedding becomes a thing of the past.

This includes reducing the reliance on Eskom as a single utility for power and creating opportunities for private investment in generation capacity.

Ramaphosa hopes the draft Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill, which was gazetted for public comment in February, will help achieve this.

The bill hopes to allow private producers to sell power while also helping Eskom to establish a transmission business.

Ramaphosa explained, “The Bill provides for the establishment of an independent transmission and system operator. This means that while the national grid will remain owned and controlled by the state, there will be competition among multiple generators selling power to distributors and customers”.

Another way the president hoped to procure energy was by raising the threshold for new generation projects to be raised from 1MW to 100 MW. This allows investors to build generation facilities up to 100MW which they can produce and sell power across the grid.

“It is difficult and unacceptable for South Africans to endure load-shedding. But we are doing everything in our means to ensure that, like state capture, it soon becomes a thing of the past,” concluded Ramaphosa.

 

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