No load shedding tonight, says Eskom

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Eskom has averted load shedding planned for Monday evening but says the power system remains constrained.

The company earlier announced that electricity supply would be interrupted from 17:00 to 21:00.

“Eskom has not implemented rotational load shedding today. Should all conditions remain the same, load shedding will not be implemented tonight,” the company said in a statement.

The country has since last Thursday experienced routine blackouts, as Eskom battles to restore supply challenges created by workers’ demonstrations at power plants.

“Although the possibility of load shedding is low for tonight, the power system continues to remain constrained,” said Eskom.

The power utility has reported a significant increase in plant outages and bottlenecks in routine maintenance, because of a lack of resources to operate plants optimally.

Blackouts are expected for the next 10 days.

Workers had abandoned their work posts because of intimidation and violence by fellow employees, who are demanding salary increases.

Workers aligned to the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) want a 15% pay hike, but the state-owned firm said it is unable to offer an increase.

Solidarity members have demanded a 9% adjustment.

The unions will resume wage negotiations with Eskom on Tuesday in a bid to resolve the impasse.

The talks are a result of intervention by Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

NUM said it expects Eskom to put a new wage offer on the table, while Numsa has said it is willing to make concessions only if Eskom comes up with a reasonable offer.

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