Cape Town – Opposition parties have strongly criticised the passage of the Eskom Debt Relief Amendment Bill in the National Assembly.
The bill mandates that the power utility, pay interest on government loans.
Opposition members argued that, given Eskom’s failing infrastructure, record financial woes, and ongoing load shedding, the R254 billion Eskom loan amounts to a bailout.
But the ANC defended the bill, asserting that it does not constitute a blank cheque for Eskom.
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Opposition parties contended that providing more funds to Eskom wouldn’t address its fundamental issues, pointing to structural problems, corruption, and government failure to implement practical solutions.
The bill’s critics also argued that Eskom, facing a R24 billion loss in the current financial year, would struggle to repay the loans and associated interest.
“They have less and less revenue, yet government’s solution is to provide a loan, but they won’t be able to repay – so it’s a bailout,” EWN quoted the Freedom Front Plus’ Wouter Wessels as saying.
They emphasised that Eskom’s problems go beyond financial challenges and involve issues like corruption and mismanagement.
Compiled by Betha Madhomu