Eskom still has to recover R23, 5 billion from municipalities which owe the power utility. This has been revealed by Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan in a written reply to a Democratic Alliance (DA) Parliamentary question in the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

Gordhan says in March this year, the overdue debt to Eskom by municipalities was standing at R19, 9 billion. at end of August, it increased to R23,5 billion.

This means that the collective debt of the municipalities increased by more than R3.5 billion between March and August this year.

In his reply, the Minister also responded to the question on conductor and cable theft suffered by Eskom. He says there has been a rapid increase in conductor theft in recent years. He says there were 5 150 incidents of cable theft with 119 arrests made for the 2018/2019 financial year.

Gordhan says the theft of Eskom cables, conductors and other equipment amounts to R105-million for the same financial year.