Eskom lodges leave to appeal as software giant Oracle pulls IT support

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Eskom
  • The power utility and Oracle have been involved in a contractual dispute over the alleged underpayment of IT support services.
  • Eskom last week lost a court application to compel Oracle to keep providing services, which it described as "quite essential".
  • The utility has now said that Oracle is no longer supplying it with It support, and it has lodged an application for leave to appeal the court ruling.

Eskom has said that business software giant Oracle is no longer supplying it with IT support services, which the utility has described as "quite essential" to some of its crucial operations.

"There haven't been any positive development between the parties," an Eskom spokesperson said on Friday morning.

Last week Eskom lost a court application to compel Oracle to renew its support services until April 2022. It has since lodged leave to appeal.

While Eskom says it has processes in place to reduce the risk to its operations, in court filings, it also warned that it might not be able to fulfil its obligation to supply electricity if Oracle stops supplying IT services.

Underpayment dispute 

The utility and the US-headquartered tech giant have been in a contractual dispute since 2019, when Oracle conducted an audit of Eskom's use of its products.

It found that the power utility had been overusing its products and should pay more.

Eskom has denied overuse claims and has questioned the audit's findings. 

In court documents, Eskom's CEO André de Ruyter said that Oracle's original claim against the power utility was for R7.3 billion. This was later reduced to R600 million and then R400 million.

Eskom contends that the true amount it owes the business software giant is R166 million.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Oracle previously told Fin24 that Eskom should "pay the pending dues for the Oracle software that they use".

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