eskom loadshedding

Eskom cancels loadshedding – Here’s what we know

Published by Andile Sicetsha

A day after facing backlash for pausing loadshedding to honour the late King Goodwill Zwelithini, Eskom has announced the end of rotational power cuts — for now.

Eskom ends loadshedding: Here’s why

The power utility noted that improvements in repair work done on a number of its generation plants has allowed for some reprieve from loadshedding.

“Eskom teams have successfully returned a generation unit each at the Duvha, Medupi, Kendal, Krieland Kusile power stations. A further unit each is expected to return to service today at the Camden and Majuba power stations,” Eskom noted in a statement.

Signs are there, though, that this relief period may be shortlived since generation units at Tutuka, Camden and Hendrika are still not feeding power to the grid.

But, for now, the energy provider has felt it is safe to cancel loadshedding after managing to “adequately replenish emergency generation reserves.”

“We currently have 7 183MW on planned maintenance, while another 10 464MW of capacity is unavailable due to breakdowns and delays. The improved generation availability, together with the lower long weekend demand, has enabled us to cancel loadshedding at this point,” the statement continued.

DA demands answers from wasteful Eskom

This optimistic sentiment has been rubbished by many, including opposition parties such as the Democratic Alliance. In a statement released on Thursday, the party questioned Eskom’s decision to pause power cuts to ensure the nation was tuned into King Zwelithini’s memorial service.

“Surely if Eskom can find 4 hours to keep the lights on for the memorial service today, the entity can find the same reprieve for ordinary South Africans who are fighting for their lives in hospitals, and businesses battling to stay afloat because of the dual blow of Covid-19 and loadshedding,” DA’s shadow public enterprises minister Ghaleb Cachalia wrote.

The party has called for the power utility to report on how much was wasted on burning diesel “in order to ‘allow the nation to mourn’ the passing of King Goodwill Zwelithini.”

“We cannot allow the ANC government’s blatant attempt to save face to go unchallenged. The DA wants to know what criteria was used to allow the suspension of loadshedding and how much money Eskom has used to burn through diesel to keep the lights on,” the statement concluded.