'Swift action' needed on Eskom, says Mabuza, as task team holds first meeting

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Deputy President David Mabuza convened the first meeting of the Eskom task team at Tuynhuys, Parliament, in Cape Town on Thursday.

The team will continue to meet weekly to assess progress in the implementation of measures proposed by the team, the Presidency said in a statement.

The meeting was held "in recognition that swift and decisive action needs to be taken to respond to the prevailing crisis of energy supply, which is informed by challenges in Eskom", according to Mabuza.

The war room, as it was formerly known, was previously established in 2014. The current task team includes the Ministers of Public Enterprises, Mineral Resources and Energy, Finance, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, State Security, Police, the Presidency and representatives of Eskom.

The Presidency noted it brings together various strategic role players in order to develop a comprehensive approach to support Eskom in implementing its turnaround plan. Its goal is to provide political oversight and address the Eskom power generation crisis as well as look at effective implementation mechanisms of the National Emergency Response Plan.

Mabuza said it was necessary to "urgently address the negative impact that power outages are having on the daily lives of the people and the economy".

"The roadmap presented by Eskom gives an indication that there is now a focused approach to how we respond to this crisis in a much more concrete manner. All relevant stakeholders must work together with speed and be focused on resolving this crisis," he said.

To further strengthen the work of the Eskom Task Team, a Technical Team has been established to provide strategic technical support and expert input to the process, the Presidency said.

* Compiled by Marelise van der Merwe

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