Less load shedding thanks to ‘progress, not election’


The 26 consecutive days of no load shedding have nothing to do with the upcoming election, says Dr. Kgosientsho Ramokgopa.

The Minister of Electricity made it clear during a media conference on Monday that the recent easing of load shedding can simply be attributed to the good progress that Eskom is making in solving the country’s electricity problem.

“We are in a toxic space. We (South Africa) have the so-called silly season of elections entered. Eskom will not enter that space,” said Ramokgopa. “We are focused on solving this problem.”

The minister said this morning that some people tend to use load shedding as a weapon against the government. “Some people use it as a campaign tool. So when you remove that (offload) from their arsenal, they are exposed.”

This ultimately leads to unfounded theories, the minister explained this morning. Ramokgopa then used the opportunity to nip in the bud the allegations of a possible collapse of the power grid before, during or after the election.

The minister says the vast majority of South Africans are giving Eskom time to deal with the problem and trusts that the past month’s reduced load shedding is indicative of the progress the national power supplier is making.

However, he is aware that others are not yet convinced of this.

Ramokgopa spoke bluntly this morning and said there will definitely be setbacks ahead. “We are still working on the reliability of these machines (generating units). Therefore, we cannot say with great confidence that shedding is behind us.

“I cannot make that statement. That would be a false statement.”

Ramokgopa did say that Eskom is currently further advanced than planned, “but we are not where we want to be”.

The minister consequently asked South Africans to dampen the “noise” in the run-up to the election.