Further bad planning by Eskom leaves the South African economy holding the torch

17 March 2009

2008 was a calamitous year for Eskom, in which it failed to keep the lights on regularly. The announcement today that Eskom has yet to finalise its electricity tariff application for the next financial year is clear evidence that its poor corporate planning record has continued into 2009.

The electricity supply and its pricing are crucial in determining the competitiveness of our economy. This uncertainty has a hugely detrimental effect on service delivery and on South Africa’s attractiveness as an investment destination.

Read the full statement on the DA’s website >>



  1. Please could you urge government to implement day-light saving hours in this country. (There has previously been talk of this). I live in Kempton Park, Gauteng and work in Sandton. To avoid the early morning traffic I leave home at 05:45. My motivation for this is:
    Saving electricity.
    Less early morning traffic accidents will incur. To clarify this – the road markings are very poor/non-existent. In the short-term it would be more economical to introduce the scheme than to paint the roads. I appreciate that the roads need to be marked,but this does not seem to be on our governing body’s priority list.
    Our neighboring country, Namibia has successfully implemented this system, likewise in Europe, USA, etc.
    Your attention to this request wil be highly appreciated.

    Kind regards
    Eva Nel

  2. We seem to get the response to the energy crisis all wrong. The problem is NOT, repeat NOT, Eskom. The problem is the National Energy Regulator NERSA and its predecessor the Electricity Regulator. Under Government’s bidding, they have meekly allowed increases in the electricity price BELOW the rate of inflation for over 10 years. It took last year’s crisis to provide a wakeup call, and already we are back in the crazy situation of blaming Eskom again.

    Let us be clear – Eskom produces the cheapest power in the world. Think about what that means. Everyone who can get hold of it does so – with the result that Eskom runs out of juice. And when that happens, our economy crashes. Remember how the land stood still while we waited for the power to come back on? Remember the cries of “A 5% drop in the GDP”?

    So the cost of our electricity MUST GO UP, and go up soon if we are to get more of the stuff. However hard we save, get more efficient, take cold showers, read by candlelight, we still need more power. It creates jobs, for one thing.

    And we shouldn’t be so shy about paying a lot more. NERSA agreed not so long ago to pay up to 7 times more for renewable energy than we do for Eskom energy. I would, right now, be happy paying just a bit more for the Eskom energy, if only I could have it. Instead, a R3bn investment is stalled, awaiting enough power to start.

    Can the DA please focus on the real villains, namely Government, and leave Eskom in peace to get on with the job?

    • @Philip It is not just about the amount of the increase, although in the current economic climate, a large increase is a serious issue. The DA’s opposition is to the tariff increases happening without any proper inquiry into Eskom’s management in the face of some major problems in recent years, as well as no sector reform that might lead to greater competitiveness and thus efficiency in electricity generation and distribution.

  3. I would like to know what the DA is going to do about the Eskom tariff increase? So far all I have seen is the fat cats getting fatter while the average man is struggling more and more each day. First the electricity and now the petrol and soon food prices are going up again. I propose a strike by the people of the Western Cape seeing that this is the only method of communication that government understand because big business will be losing money.

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