Carina Koen
2 minute read
4 Sep 2020
10:58 am

Eskom suspends Tutuka, Kendal power station managers

Carina Koen

The previous culture of weak consequence management will no longer be the norm and will no longer be tolerated at Eskom, the board says.

Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter. Picture: Moneyweb

After the country was plunged into Stage 4 load shedding this week, Eskom Group Chief Executive (GCE) André de Ruyter summarily suspended the Tutuka and Kendal power station managers pending disciplinary inquiries.

The Eskom board and executive management said on Friday they strongly support De Ruyter on this matter, and that “further interventions are ongoing at the Kriel and Duvha power stations”.

Three senior generation managers have in the meantime been deployed to Duvha, Kriel, Tutuka and Kendal power stations to provide leadership and oversight in person, the board said in a statement.

“The Board is pleased that some units have since returned to service, but is aware that the level of failures is unacceptably high.

“Whilst it is true that the aging fleet is plagued by legacy issues of neglect and omitted maintenance and is therefore susceptible to unpredictable breakdowns, it is also true that the situation is exacerbated by serious issues of apathetic behaviour by some management staff,” the board said.

It added that engagements had been held with other power station managers to ensure that the previous culture of weak consequence management would no longer be the norm and would no longer be tolerated at Eskom.

“The Board and executives are fully cognisant of the substantial strain that loadshedding exerts on the wellbeing of citizens, on an already depressed economy and are committed to attaining sustainability and reliability of the Eskom generation plant.”

The board and executive management have met twice in the past two days with Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan, to interrogate the systemic causes of the load shedding and the measures being taken to repair breakdowns, according to the statement.

“In these meetings it has been agreed that an urgent culture change and high-level competence enhancement across all 44 000 staff, which the GCE [De Ruyter] began upon his arrival, should be accelerated, promoted and strongly supported.”

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