Eskom must get its house in order: Nene

2015-01-12 08:26

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene says Eskom must sort out its problems because they are hurting the economy.

Nene told the Business Report that the government was not able to help Eskom with day-to-day and operational issues, as it was best suited to deal with these itself.

Nene reportedly said the government would do its part, but bailing the utility out would be inappropriate.

“It’s not about the bailout. It doesn’t help to always bail out. The issue here is to ensure that there is [a] medium- to long-term plan to ensure that Eskom is in a good situation,” he was quoted as saying.

Nene’s department would wait for Eskom to formally approach it for help.

“If Eskom says it’s only left with the money to sustain it [till the end of the month], what does that mean? Does it mean it has not been generating profit through electricity sales? Eskom is in business, making and losing money,” he told the newspaper.

On Friday, Eskom confirmed its financial issues were partly responsible for the country’s rolling blackouts.

Spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe said the government had indicated it would provide Eskom with R20 billion, but that this was not enough.

On Friday, the Mail & Guardian quoted Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown saying the parastatal would run out of money by the end of January.

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