The South African Federation of Trade Unions (SAFTU) has rejected Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe’s announcement that 25 Preferred Bidder Projects have been appointed to produce Renewable Energy.
It says government is gradually privatising the country’s energy at the expense of poor people. Mantashe says the projects are expected to inject R50 billion of private sector investment into the economy.
SAFTU General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi says there will no longer be competitive electricity tariffs.
“The whole mission of unbundling Eskom is about hollowing out the independent system market operator. This is to ensure that the agenda behind privatisation of our country’s energy provision is easily facilitated through the buying from the IPPS and SAFTU will go down in history as having rejected this commodification of our country’s energy provision by the ANC.”
Media briefing on latest developments in the energy sector
Numsa also reacts to Mantashe’s announcement
Trade union Numsa’s General Secretary Irvin Jim has raised questions over the REIPPP and whether load shedding will ultimately be dealt with.
“The announcement is consistent with the integrated resource plan but I am not sure what is being addressed because in that plan Eskom’s availability factor is around 65%. In other words, Eskom is not performing and to introduce more IPPs into the grid is not going to change Eskom’s availability facto. It is supposed to be at 75% and Eskom is performing at 65%. The fundamental question is how is that going to deal with the crisis of load shedding?”
Irvin Jim speaks about the REIPPP announcement: