We’d say there is light at the end of the tunnel, but you never know when another round of Stage 6 load shedding could extinguish it. President Ramaphosa, deputy president David Mabuza, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and senior Eskom figures have gathered at Megawatt Park in Sandton to hammer out a plan and spring the utility out of trouble.
#Eskom in particular, is a strategic asset that literally powers our economy. Govt will continue to support the work of the Board and management but will not shy away from taking drastic action to change the trajectory of the energy utility – President @CyrilRamaphosa pic.twitter.com/0CS2VysusB
— Khusela Diko🇿🇦 (@KhuselaS) December 11, 2019
Eskom: What is up for discussion?
Khusela Diko is the president’s spokesperson. She has confirmed that plant maintenance is high up on Ramaphosa’s agenda. We’re expecting an announcement on the resolutions at some point this afternoon:
“The president saw it fit to cancel his trip to Egypt, because this is a national crisis. He will be engaging the board members and senior management officials of Eskom, to find out how we got here and establish what the plan is going forward. There needs to be immediate measures to improve plant maintenance.”
President @CyrilRamaphosa and Deputy President @DDMabuza meet with Minister @GwedeMantashe1 and Minister Gordhan ahead of the engagement with the Board and management of #Eskom this morning. pic.twitter.com/UOZ4bSFQgk
— PresidencyZA (@PresidencyZA) December 11, 2019
The nation waits with bated breath to see what comes of this “meeting of the minds”. New Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter is, comically, out of the picture here. Although he only begins his role in January 2020, he hasn’t turned up for any of these crisis talks. We guess he needs to soak up all the holiday time he can get.
When will this round of load shedding end?
More importantly, South Africans are also keen to find out when load shedding will come to an end. Wednesday marks day seven of the continuous power cuts, which have blighted businesses and public services alike. The usually reliable Eskom Se Push service had a little blip earlier in the day, but it has since returned to its full functions.
The popular app is predicting Stage 2 will last until the end of Friday. Then, from Saturday onwards, relaxed pressure on the grid and generally-improved weather conditions mean that the lights are coming back on. We could be back to full-power at the start of the weekend.
— Basil Katakuzinos (@BKatakuzinos) December 11, 2019