There are plans afoot to sell Eskom’s Kusile housing project in eMalahleni, Mpumalanga. The power utility is negotiating with the Department of Human Settlement to purchase the abandoned blocks of apartments.
Eskom spent over R800 million for the development that started with a budget of R160 million in 2008.
The 336 units were developed to house workers at the Kusile power station during its construction phase. However, the vision was never realised, but millions were spent.
“Eskom stopped funding the project in 2019 after realising that it was not going to serve its intended purpose. The company is currently in negotiations with the department of human settlements to have it buying the flats and using them to provide housing for residents,” says Eskom spokesperson, Sikonathi Mantshantsha.
National Union of Mineworkers (Num) claims no knowledge of the project and they want nothing to do with it.
“The workers are not aware of any flats that were constructed to accommodate them. They have traveling allowances as well as housing allowances. They have nothing to do with the flats in question,” says Num’s Livhuwani Mammburu.
Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises has in a statement lamented the fruitless and wasteful expenditure. The committee is planning to summon Eskom next week Wednesday.
The building is already showing signs of neglect.
If the human settlement department takes over. There will be some work to do before the buildings can be occupied and generate lost capital.