Eskom’s improvement attributed to maintenance team: Chair

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The Chairperson of the Board of Eskom, Mteto Nyati, has attributed the recent progress in the power utility’s power generation to the dedication and skill of its maintenance team.

Nyati’s remarks come in the wake of positive developments in Eskom’s efforts to address the ongoing energy crisis plaguing the nation.

Eskom’s Chair Mteto Nyati says a new CEO must be appointed as a matter of urgency

New Eskom CEO

Nyati says a new Eskom CEO must be appointed as a matter of urgency to stabilise the entity. His utterances come as Eskom has been without a CEO since the departure of Andre de Ruyter in February this year.

The recent departure of Eskom chair Mpho Makwana is one of Eskom’s resignations in crucial leadership positions, and this is amid continuous dismal reports of operational and financial results.

In its annual report posted last week, Eskom’s financial year which ended in March 2023 saw a decline in both operational and financial performance, incurring a net loss of R23.9 billion, doubling up from the R11.9 billion net loss reported for the previous financial year.

Eskom says primary energy expenses, specifically the expenditure on generation capacity of open-cycle gas turbines, remain the biggest contributor to the financial loss.

Integrated Resource Plan

In a recent statement by the Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, it was announced that the government’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) is on course and is poised for implementation by the end of the month.

The primary objective of the IRP is to mitigate the frequency of rolling blackouts and reduce the severity of power cuts across the country.

The IRP, designed to incorporate multiple energy sources and their associated costs, is expected to offer significant relief from South Africa’s persistent energy challenges.

Speaking on the recent improvements, Nyati has emphasised the rigorous approach that Eskom’s maintenance team has adopted, focusing on systematically addressing the issues within individual power stations and specific units.

He says the meticulous process of rectifying and restoring power stations to optimal functioning levels, akin to their original capacity when first commissioned.

Acknowledging that this process is time-consuming, Nyati stresses the necessity of the allocated 24-month timeframe to execute the comprehensive overhaul effectively. He expresses confidence in the ongoing initiatives, highlighting the considerable contributions of the generation team as the driving force behind the visible signs of progress and the optimistic outlook for the future of Eskom’s electricity generation.

Mitigating South Africa’s energy crisis