Eskom: Possibility of load shedding remains high

Eskom: Possibility of load shedding remains high

Eskom says the possibility of stage 1 load shedding between 5pm and 9pm on Wednesday remains high.

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“This follows the tripping of a unit at the Medupi Power Station. As a result, we are short of 600 megawatts and if we don’t recover the megawatts will be forced to implement stage 1 of load shedding,” says Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe. 

Consumers are encouraged to continue using electricity sparingly by switching off greyer and all non-essential lighting, electricity appliances in an attempt to avoid the forced blackouts. 


Meanwhile, energy expert Roger Lilley says the blame for the load shedding must be laid at the door of the trade unions.

Three trade unions, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and Solidarity, are locked in a wage dispute with Eskom. 


The dispute lead to wildcat strikes at several of Eskom’s power stations which affected the delivery of coal. 


The strikes began after the utility said it wasn’t able to offer an increase year. The parties have since restarted wage negotiations. 

“The unions are to blame (for the load shedding) because they are trying to use this as a lever to get salary increases and the only power the unions have is to stop operations at the utility,” Lilley says. 

“Eskom is to blame historically because the problem we have today was not generated today. The problem comes from Eskom mistakes over a number of years where poor decisions have been taken, for example  employing many more people than it should’ve employed, signing very high coal contracts in order to assist certain individuals,” Lilley said, referring to the controversial Gupta family.





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