Load shedding wrecks SA investment drive


South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa.

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa says solving the electricity challenges is vital for South Africa’s investment drive.

The persistent power challenges have forced the head of state to halt his overseas tour.

“First and foremost, we have to overcome the electricity crisis,” Ramaphosa stated.

He was writing in his weekly letter, made available to CAJ News Africa on Tuesday.

Ramaphosa noted that since late last week, Eskom has been forced to implement load shedding due to breakdowns at a number of power stations.

The situation has been made worse by the depletion of emergency generation reserves such as pumped storage and diesel turbines and the need for these to be replenished.

“The severe load shedding of the last few days has reminded us how unstable our ageing power stations are,” the president said.

“It has given greater urgency to the measures we announced two months ago to stabilise our electricity supply,” Ramaphosa added in his letter.

On Sunday, he held an urgent virtual meeting with ministers and officials on the reasons for the current load shedding and the steps being taken to reduce the severity and frequency of load shedding in the coming days and weeks.

“Eskom has already announced some of the measures it is taking and we will remain seized with this issue until the situation is resolved,” Ramaphosa assured.

He reiterated, “Solving the electricity crisis is necessary if we are to realise the potential of our economy.”

In 2018, South Africa launched an ambitious investment drive to raise R1,2 trillion in new investments over five years.

To date, government has raised more than 90 percent of that amount in commitments from both domestic and foreign investors.

Of these commitments around R330 billion has already flowed into the economy.

However, corruption and COVID-19 have wrecked the economy.

– CAJ News

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