Gordhan gets flak over decision to appeal load shedding ruling

todayMay 9, 2023 50

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Political analyst, Dr Sam Koma, says the rolling blackouts currently gripping South Africa, if not adequately tackled, will come back to bite government during next year’s national elections.
Koma was reacting to Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan’s decision to appeal a high court ruling, which gave him 60 days to ensure that there is sufficient energy supply for public hospitals, schools and police stations.

The court also found that government failed to remedy the issue after it was warned that it would run out of generating capacity by 2008.

Gordhan has attributed government’s decision to appeal the judgment to ‘serious concerns about its implications’ on efforts to stabilise the ailing national grid.

However, Koma believes that the move is short-sighted and indicates that the ANC government is out of tune and detached from reality.
Build One South Africa (BOSA) is one of the 19 organisations that had taken government and the Public Enterprises Department to the high court in a bid to declare load shedding unconstitutional.
In their court papers, the affected parties had included evidence from expert witnesses on how incessant power cuts had resulted in deaths at public hospitals.
BOSA Leader, Mmusi Maimane, says history will remember Minister Pravin Gordhan as a public leader who ignored the cries of ordinary South Africans and chose to stand with his colleagues.
“Minister Pravin Gordhan I want to tell you straight Sir that the next time a child dies in hospital because ultimately incubators are not working; crime goes up during load shedding or children cannot study because of load shedding – it is in your hands. You and your government are insisting that even during these difficult times – you will not  provide alternative energy for police stations. Here is what disturbs me the most though – when your colleagues demanded alternative energy – for their mansions; the government found the money, provided for it and put alternative energy in all ministerial residences,” says the BOSA leader.
Despite the outrage, however, energy expert Professor Sampson Mamphweli believes that it’s almost impossible for government to meet the 60 days requirement.
Eskom on the other hand says it is still studying the judgment as well as its implications and will respond in due time.

Written by: Nokwazi Qumbisa

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