April is the consumers’ cruellest month

2012-04-02 00:00

CALLING April the darkest month for consumers, Trade Union Federation, Cosatu has slammed Eskom’s electricity tariff increases due to go up by a minimum of 16%.

Cosatu spokesperson Patrick Craven said that in the same month consumers also faced a petrol price hike, metrorail fares were going up and by the end of April motorists would be expected to pay at least 30c a kilometre to drive on Gauteng’s highways.

Referring to the Eskom hikes, Craven said this is the price the country pays for the policy of commodifying basic public services with the aim of maximising profits. He said that while Eskom was owned by the state, since the late 1990s it had become “corporatised” and operated along commercial lines based on maximising profits.

“The concept of pre-paid meters was introduced to enforce payment by poor consumers, and now the measures meant for cross-subsidisation of low-income domestic customers, like the inclining block rate tariffs, cannot be applied on the households with pre-paid electricity meters,” he said.

Craven said Statistics SA’s 2010 general household survey found that 2,3% of all households with mains connections had their electricity cut off for non-payment in the month before the survey. The cut-offs affected 250 000 households, or about a million people, excluded people who could not afford pre-paid.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.