Cape Town – Former public protector Thuli Madonsela has pleaded with Minister of Electricity Kgosientsho Ramokgopa for an emergency solution to load shedding.
This is after Ramokgopa presented his energy action plan during a Cabinet meeting where both long and short-term plans were discussed.
The Cabinet noted the presentation by Ramokgopa and directed that a further assessment of the electricity situation and measures to be taken be addressed at the next Necom (National Energy Crisis Committee) meeting that will be convened as soon as possible.
Like many frustrated South African’s, Madonsela took to her Twitter account to express her frustration with the country’s ongoing energy crisis.
“Dear minister of electricity: Just got electricity back then load-shedding within 30 minutes. Please give us an emergency solution.
“The policy on ‘buy and claim from SARS’ is social justice dissonant in that it ignores that poor and lower economic echelon people do not have the required capital outlay and also will get very little back as the stipulated percentage rebate is minuscule in rand.
“Also to limit risk, you need to diversify solutions or pathways. In this case, mini and micro grids should contain the risks even for the future. When one power station is disrupted, the whole nation should not be affected. Please minister, act as if the emergency is still on.”
This was not the first time Madonsela shared her thoughts on the worsening crisis. Earlier this year, she suggested Eskom consider buying solar panels and inverters amid the ongoing energy crisis, reported TimesLIVE.
She said the ailing power utility could retail the solar panels and inverters to the nation after training unemployed young persons to do installations, the report said.
The report said according to Madonsela, the initiative could help end load shedding stages with speed.
Meanwhile, Ramokgopa has warned of a dark and cold winter if Eskom’s grid remained constrained.
He said that South Africans must brace themselves for a difficult winter plagued by higher stages of load shedding.
According to EWN, the minister said that Eskom needed at least 66 000 megawatts to bridge the gap between demand and supply.
“I’ll be brutally honest. It’s going to be an exceptionally difficult winter. We know that in summer conditions, the deficit is 6 000 megawatts. When we go into winter, the peak can go up to 37 000 megawatts. But at the current rate of trips and failures, it’s going to be an exceptionally difficult winter,” the report quoted Ramokgopa as saying.
Compiled by Olwethu Mpeshe