Electricity, petrol hikes 'a harsh blow'

2012-04-02 12:17

Johannesburg - The electricity and petrol hikes in April will be a harsh blow to the poor, Cosatu said on Monday.

"As might be expected, the poorest households, the least organised, worst resourced and most marginalised, who tend to vote for the ANC, bear a disproportionate burden," said Congress of SA Trade Unions spokesperson Patrick Craven.

He said people were already battling to afford electricity and were constantly subjected to cut-offs.

"Despite progress in the provision of electricity infrastructure, a significant part of the population - 25% of households - are still without electricity at all, and 53% of these use firewood for cooking."

Electricity is to increase by at least 16% in April, when the price of petrol will increase by 71c/l in Gauteng.

Craven said even 25% of those with access to electricity used firewood for cooking, because of the cost.

"Cosatu has over and over again acknowledged and celebrated the tremendous strides made by the ANC government... [but] the current rates of unemployment, poverty and inequalities, and the unequal levels of service delivery, in particular as they affect women and youth, are a ticking time bomb," said Craven.

  • Klaus - 2012-04-02 12:31

    Dear COSATU & communist leaches, YOU voted for them - SUFFER until you know how the democratic process works

      Max - 2012-04-02 12:36

      Well said, but the middle class is currenlty being destroyed by these clowns. They are eating the hen that lays the golden tax eggs.

      Spyker - 2012-04-02 12:41

      All of this is the consequence of the knock-on effect of unrealistic wage-demands. The laws of economics are as strong as the laws of nature. Jump out of an aircraft without a parachute, while you fall you may tell yourself you have disproved the laws of nature (viz gravity), that is until you hit the terra-firma... The laws of economics work in exactly the same way - just ask Standard & Poor's...

      Thando - 2012-04-02 12:50

      The old "You voted for them" comment. At least COSATU now questions the ANC. @Spyker - You are right about wage demands but what is the solution ? Lets say wages are kept in check for the next 5 years - petrol price will rise because of Arabs, Toll fees will come about because of Austrians, Food prices will rise because of price fixing , banking fees rise because of Chinese investor demands - the wage earner eventually falls below the poverty line.

      Zambezi - 2012-04-02 12:54

      Here comes the next recession !

      Nosiphom - 2012-04-02 13:05

      Spiker_may: Statistics show that the salaries and bonuses of the fat cats at the very top rose the highest in the last five years. So it is not the wage demands of the guys at the bottom. The biggest problem is that we the taxpayers in the middle class allow this rubbish to happen. We benefit the least from our taxes. The hike in the fuel levy does not benefit many of us. The hike in the electricity prices goes into bonuses and parties at ESKOM.

      Spyker - 2012-04-02 13:31

      @Thando.., This is not the place for a lengthy economic dissertation. Ask yourself the following, though - eg.., Why is fuel that is being exported from SA to neighbouring countries, cheaper in those countries, than what it is in SA..? Why are cars built in SA and exported to other countries, cheaper in those countries (at any arbitrary exchange rate), than in SA..? The cost of fuel, cars, etc in SA, carry (inter alia) levies that harbours the massive inefficiencies in the South African labour force - a simple, albeit inconvenient fact... PS - 'toll fees' is NOT the fault of the Austrians (the ANC appointed them), the Arabs do not determine the fuel price in SA (the ANC government does - as said including massive levies), the banks did not ask for Chinese investors (it is the ANC), food prices rise as much due to government levies and costs as it does because of the knock-on effect of the ANC government's overall greed. No point (pun intended) in pointing the finger at others - the economics of SA, is 100% the fault of THOSE WHO VOTE FOR THE ANC...

  • Stille - 2012-04-02 12:32

    It wont be a blow to the poor alone. Im by no means poor, but this is adveresely affecting my way of life. Now, i am truly tolled and taxed to death. I'm letting my maid go, cant afford to keep her employed. She has to feed 3 children, but unfortunately, its either her family or mine.

      Gerhart - 2012-04-02 13:19

      The tragedy is that the people who WORK for a living a vastly outnumbered by those who VOTE for a living!

  • grant.hide - 2012-04-02 12:33

    Great, just Great. The struggle they always talk about, isn't this. They struggling to explain why they have x5m's and massive houses and millions.

  • NrGx - 2012-04-02 12:35

    "Cosatu has over and over again acknowledged and celebrated the tremendous strides made by the ANC government..." if they have indeed made significant strides, why are the poor getting poorer, infrastructure diminishing, provinces going bankrupt. where are these "strides" he is speaking of? Ill tell you the back pockets of the anc officials

  • Khathu - 2012-04-02 12:38

    We are so screwed, e-tolls, petrol hike, electricity hike? Food will hike, bread will hike? what more?

      Thando - 2012-04-02 12:53

      I'm gonna cancel DSTV. First thing to go for many people will be DSTV. Multichoice must be really worried about this

      Deon - 2012-04-02 13:07

      We nearly had a "poo" tax on dogs too, luckilly it was an April fools joke. Good one Carte Blanche. DSTV is still tops, will rather eat and drink less before I switch that off.

  • llewellync - 2012-04-02 12:42

    "As might be expected, the poorest households, the least organised, worst resourced and most marginalised, who tend to vote for the ANC, bear a disproportionate burden," You forget to mention the middleclass taxpayer. We are suffering just as bad. Our tax goes for everything but our infrastructure, it is all spent spent on stupid birthday parties and stupid tollgates that are unconstitutional. So on top of our tax burden, we have to suffer bigger and bigger electricity bills and fuel prices. It's a crime. It's time everyone opens their eyes and see what our government is busy doing to us! The poor become poorer, the tax payer is bled dry and the elites are just pocketing more and more money.

  • Reitz - 2012-04-02 12:47

    How the ANC even gets away with this is beyond me. "Vote for Change"? Yes. It will all change from good to bad, rich to poor, electricity to dark. Being able to drive to having no petrol to drive or not being able to afford petrol. The DA does a great job in Cape Town. Let them do it here too.

      Sharon - 2012-04-02 12:58

      I reckon the "change" people vote for is what is left in their pocket after paying tax!

      Peek - 2012-04-02 14:32

      The problem with the DA winning the next election is, how would you fix the pile of sh#t the ANC has made in the last 18 years. It's like Obama taking over from Bush, how the hell do you fix it without being fingered as the wrong doer yourself?

  • Phumi - 2012-04-02 12:50

    Only Mangaung will liberate us from this current greed we are experiencing from our leaders! What happened to the R 90 billion economic spin-off from the World Cup we were promised? There is no reason for ESKOM to up their tarrifs they must just learn to manager those power stations efficiently like the apartheid government used to! What happened to the pipeline from here to Venezuala and the one from Angola that Thabo Mbeki signed in 2008 to supply us with cheap fuel? These are all signs of dictatorship by those who are power drunk!

      Peek - 2012-04-02 14:36

      The problem with Eskom is that they didn't maintain anything the last 18 years. I actually know this for a fact. An ANC chum would get to be the chief of a power station, neglect almost all maintenance to be able to show a profit the end of the year. After 3 years you are promoted and it's not your problem anymore. The next guy then does the same. Eventually you have to power done one or more ovens as it becomes a safety risk. After a while you're running on 1/2 the turbines and ovens the power station has. Fixing the power station now is no more an option. Breaking it down and rebuilding it is. It's a sad state of affairs.

  • sally.lewitt - 2012-04-02 12:52

    The situation in SA is becoming more and more ridiculous and more of a freak show. Where are we going to be in 1 year from now at this rate? Drastic measures and a hard realistic look will have to be taken by the *powers that be* or we are heading straight into a train wreck at break neck speed.. How Sad is That!

      butch.poulter - 2012-04-02 13:09

      Problem is Sally, like myself, we all sit a bitch about the incompitent uneducated ANC running our country but we, the middle class arent doing anything about it. I believe we have still got too much to loose. we still live behind our elec fence, have braais and in general live a good life. But for how long. The well will eventually run dry on the ANC. BUT WHAT AND WHEN ARE WE GOING TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT????? Unlike the masses we dont stand together and until then we dont stand a chance

      sally.lewitt - 2012-04-02 13:38

      Butch, I agree with you 100% HOW do we as a minority DO something constructive when our voices are not heard..? How do we act on the helpless situation and every day when we wake up to the days news, there are more and more shocking Head Lines? I feel like my hands are chopped off.. I grew up in Zambia, and it too went belly up and feels like I am in a re-occurring nightmare.. The rich are getting richer and the poor, poorer. Anyway... Just rambling.

      Nosiphom - 2012-04-02 15:40

      Sally, I just wonder what you mean by minority. We the people who are oiling the economy are sitting and complaining. Last week the FF+ urged people to protest against the GP - Tolls. The turnout was not that great, because we are all too busy earning money and thinking only about ourselves. We need to unite just once behind a cause and we will win.

  • clinton.bowden1 - 2012-04-02 12:57

    And don't forget to mention the tolls. Oh no wait after a "fruitful" meeting with the ANC as well as a story that a cosatu-linked benefactor gained the from the tolls, the tolls don't really add to the plight of the poor. The added cost from the tolls is really just a figment of imagination right ? Cosatu were once a voice, now just lost all intergrity.

  • Adrian - 2012-04-02 13:04

    If Democracy was truly free and fair - it would be outlawed ..

  • Sajitha - 2012-04-02 13:08

    Petrol hike is just american result of banning major oil supplier- iran. Electricity hike is one hell of a story because it's to fund the salaries of eskom executives. All of them are way above R1m each. I thought Thuli Madonsela is very good at this. Energy ministry should have made a proper audit on how the money is *actually* used versus the claim eskom make. Rich will remain rich at the expense of the poor.

  • Pieter Erasmus - 2012-04-02 13:10

    talking will not fix the financial problems that the government are causing the public, there must be a way that the people can take charge or stop this increases of essentials. we've been taking all the price increases year after year but this just got out of hand

  • chere.nienaber - 2012-04-02 13:11

    Since Jan until now I'm taking an extra R2000 per month at least out of my pocket on expenses... it's already taking food out of my mouth. I honestly have NO idea how people can survive on less than R10 k per month, this is shocking.

  • Pieter - 2012-04-02 13:18

    Besides, how the hell can one remain a patriot for his country if he is denied financial freedom....

  • grant.hide - 2012-04-02 13:24

    They forgot to mention the TAXes are going up soon. Lol.

  • hennie.erasmus - 2012-04-02 13:48

    These price increases are happening in Europe also... it is not unique to South Africa

      Tony Lapson - 2012-04-02 14:04

      I understand that with fuel, but not electricity. The electricity price rise is due to bad planning from the monopoly. In proper countries, there is either a competitive market, or a non profit service which is considered as a necessary service which the people deserve. Here, Eskom is not about the future or the people, they are only about the "now" and the profits.

  • IcemanGP - 2012-04-02 13:50

    "And you worked that out only now, Sherlock!"

  • Sechaba - 2012-04-02 13:52

    how can i get hold of Zuma's petrol card???

  • Tony Lapson - 2012-04-02 13:58

    This is what you get when individuals in the government benefit from a monopolized electricity market.

  • Bobo - 2012-04-02 14:08

    Afican National Crisis.............Need we say more ? The question is will the masses have enough sav to see the light ? :-(

      Peek - 2012-04-02 14:45

      The problem is the masses don't even know about this. They are uninformed, and the ANC likes it that way. The masses just realize that stuff is getting more expense and then still blame it on apartheid.

  • joepac.jn - 2012-04-02 14:13

    Times r tough

  • channettec - 2012-04-02 14:17

    It is a sorry sight to see so many people who are being disadvantaged by those they voted into power. They are being neglected by those in power while the "fat cats" at the top get more and more the poor at the bottom are forgottn.

  • Rodney - 2012-04-02 14:18

    The only way to show our objections is by- Don't buy e-tags or pay for e-tolling ever. Don't buy fuel from BP and Sasol ever ,when they have no customers maybe they will lower the price and other petrol retailers will have to do the same.(idea i read via bbm) Stop buying new cars till they lower the pricing ,the rich\middle class need to do their part here !!! And vote for a political party that doesnt want to make themselves their family and friends rich ...but one that cares about making South Africa a place for everybody to have a decent life.

  • Johnathon - 2012-04-02 14:22

    I can never forget the comical situation where at one part of the country, Eskom employees and contractors at the two major power stations being built, were all on the march for improved wages, working conditions, hand outs etc, and were burning, toy-toying, and killing people etc, when a similarly large demonstration elsewhere, was being held to protests against proposed hikes in electricity tariffs. In any other civilized democracy, a totally non performing president like this Zuma clown, would have had a vote of no confidence thrown at him, and would have been out of office before sunset. But here back in the good old SA, Zuma is supremely confident of winning a second term in office. The wail is how can the tax payer express his dissatisfaction and anger at the corrupt, inefficient, self serving Government we have - very easy actually - Just take example from our brothers -Stop paying anything - Like TV Licenses, Income Tax, Rates and Taxes, Electricity and Water, and of course as we have all already fully agreed to - No e-tags EVER EVER EVER - And never ever pay any e-toll invoice. Just straight into the dustbin. With taxpayers money held legally in trust, until Zuma and delegated useless parasitizes and criminals in the Government are removed. Only then will the taxpayer’s funds be released. Will only work however with 100% resolve from all tax payers. From all the yappers on this site however, when it’s time to walk the talk, the group will dissolve down to 2.5% left.

  • Carry - 2012-04-02 15:04


  • Carry - 2012-04-02 15:05


  • neto.maape - 2012-04-02 16:54

    I like cosatu's critisms of the ANC/government. Always constructive and focused on the important problems that affect the ones that most need help. Unlike the DA and afriforum for example, who focus on petty things instead of the big problem of other human beings living in a state of poverty. To me that's a crisis, because when you have a massive percentage of the population living difficult lives it can lead to political instability or an economic revolution that isn't peaceful. The people won't allow a few to live extravagantly at the expense of many forever.

  • Shaun - 2012-04-02 20:00

    Try a solar geyser I was sceptical when installing it, but WOW my electricity bill came down by 30% instantly. So now that can pay for the ESKOM & petrol price increase.

  • Gregory - 2012-04-03 01:09

    Government needs to stop stealing public money. ANC is rotten to the core, huge strikes are on the way . Employers will be unable to pay workers a living wage . Zuma and his corrupt cronies will continue to steal from the mouths of the poor.

  • Niki - 2012-04-03 11:30

    Of course the poorest supporters of the ANC will be worse hit than those who get their trips on the gravy train paid for by the poor and middle class...

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