Load shedding — Eskom told to explain

2008-01-17 00:00

THE country’s Public Protector has intervened in the ongoing fiasco of load shedding power outages.

Yesterday, advocate Lawrence Mushwana wrote a letter to Eskom’s chief executive, Jacob Maroga, demanding that he explain load shedding and related power cuts.

Mushwana said load shedding is “having a devastating impact on, inter alia, service delivery by government entities; is causing serious prejudice to the private sector, and negatively affects the lives of many of the people of South Africa on a daily basis”.

He added that as Public Protector, he is mandated by the Constitution to investigate conduct by public entities that can be deemed unlawful or as causing improper prejudice to any person.

Mushwana demands in the letter to know what measures were put in place by Eskom to prevent the “current situation” and the steps that Eskom intends taking to compensate those who have suffered damage and inconvenience.

Spokesman for the office of the Public Protector, Buyiselo Ndiyane, told The Witness that the letter to Eskom is part of a preliminary investigation into the matter.

“If the Public Protector is not satisfied with the responses … from Eskom, he might then decide to continue with the investigation.”

Meanwhile, confusion over load shedding schedules continued, with The Witness fielding a number of calls from angry residents yesterday.

Most residents who called in were from Ashburton and surrounding areas. A resident, who said Ashburton was experiencing about four power outages a day, said she felt that “Ashburton residents are being picked on”.

Yesterday, the area was due to have four power outages — 8 am to 10 am, noon to 2 pm, 6 pm to 8 pm and finally 10 pm to 1 am today.

Irene Macdonnell, a pensioner living in Ashburton, lamented the fact that residents were not given prior warning. She said that the 086 003 7566 Eskom customer care line was not helpful either.

Residents and businesses in the Camperdown area also had similar tales. “We are now forced to put our staff on short time because we cannot afford to pay them as we are losing so much money due to these power cuts,” said one business owner.


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.