We can now all agree Eskom’s tragedy was self-inflicted

What’s news?

Load shedding is going nowhere, but some Eskom officials might be. Eskom warned this week that load shedding could continue until April if things don’t change, EWN reported. On Wednesday, public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan said that at least 40% of the problems at Eskom were due to human error, including fraud, corruption and mismanagement.

He promised that there would be consequences for those responsible for delays at Medupi and Kusile, the two mega coal power stations that are years behind schedule and millions of rands over-budget.

While there has been some improvement in electricity generation, Eskom says it will implement Stage 2 load shedding on Thursday, according to fin24.com. This means it will shed 2000MW from the grid.

Why this is important:

  • It is a major admission from a senior political figure, that the crisis at Eskom is, in fact, self-inflicted. It is indicative of the damage done to the country – possibly one of the first times we are able to see first-hand what corruption and mismanagement means to each of our lives.

What’s going on?

  • According to Business Day, Gordhan said that the designs for Medupi had been changed midway, and that there were serious design and technical flaws as a result. Experts are being brought in from Italy to help government perform an audit on the massive facilities.
  • Meanwhile, Eskom’s finances are so dire that without a massive bailout from government (again), it will struggle to operate beyond April. Don’t put away those candles.

Meanwhile, here is a good explainer video on what load shedding means: