Lynne Brown, Public Enterprises Minister has issued a warning of rough electricity times to come to all South Africans as Eskom is nowhere near to overcome its power crisis. Brown was speaking at the Parliament yesterday.
She further said that the next two years are going to be hard and appealed for residents and businesses to exercise patience.
At the same time, Eskom has announced that power cuts are likely at the weekend.
“While the demand for electricity is expected to be met on Friday and Saturday, there is a very high risk of load-shedding at the weekend,” the power utility said.
“Eskom has targeted the weekend to conduct load-shedding, should the need arise, on purpose so as to limit the impact on the economy.”
The constrained power system was partially due to “urgent planned maintenance” at the Cahora Bassa transmission line which will mean some of its capacity is unavailable on Sunday.
The weekend will also be used to build up water reserves for the pumped storage schemes which use water to generate electricity and to conserve diesel supplies for the week ahead.
The power utility said its load-shedding schedules were available for its direct customers on its website. Customers could also contact their call centre for additional information (0860037566).
Brown said the country was going through a tough period with unserviced power stations, low generation capacity and lack of skills in the energy sector.
The minister made her appeal in the National Assembly, during the debate on the crisis at Eskom.
The debate was called by the DA as the country continues to face power outages and ageing infrastructure at Eskom.
She said things would improve once the two power stations, Medupi and Kusile, come on stream.
“Given that a power station is not like a car, when it breaks down, it sometimes takes months to repair, which means that we have less power than we need for that period of time,” said Brown.
Brown said one of the factors that had delayed the completion of Medupi and Kusile was strikes.