ActionSA opposes Eskom’s appeal on loadshedding exemptions

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ActionSA has criticised government for failing to uphold the Constitution in ensuring the preservation of the right to public institutions.

Today, the party will oppose Eskom’s appeal against a ruling that prohibits the power utility from implementing load shedding in schools, healthcare facilities, and police stations.

The court issued this ruling in 2023, exempting these critical public institutions from load shedding.

In 2023, Judge Norman Davis concluded that the government’s failure to safeguard Eskom from criminal activity and state capture, which led to the energy crisis and load shedding, violated the Bill of Rights.

Davis instructed Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa to take action by January 31, 2024, to ensure sufficient electricity supply to prevent interruptions in these public health establishments, schools, and police services.

ActionSA’s National Spokesperson on Energy, Mpho Madisha, criticised government’s response to load shedding saying, “When the president was the deputy and being passed to manage load shedding, we heard the same. Hopefully, there’s things that they are doing right, but the problem that we have fundamentally is that we have been hearing this story over and over again and we haven’t yet come out of load shedding 17 years down the line since 2007.”

Eskom’s leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) argues that the court granted exemption relief without being requested by any party.

Eskom says, “The court order is vague and it does not take into consideration the electricity regulatory framework relating to load shedding. Technically, it is not possible to exempt these entities due to the embeddedness of the network. As a result, it will be difficult to implement.”

Madisha emphasized, “We are still experiencing load shedding and we have been hearing that it was going to go away and it never goes away. So perhaps we need different people to go and have a look at how we can resolve load shedding permanently.”

Energy Crisis | Concerns that it will be difficult to exempt essential services from blackouts