Eskom COO says he’s on board for Middelburg to own Hendrina Power Station

Eskom Chief Operating Officer Jan Oberholzer expressed his support towards the Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s plan to participate in repowering Hendrina Power Station, to provide uninterrupted electricity supply to Middelburg and its surrounding areas.

The plant will be entirely decommissioned in 2025, with the first unit shut down in 2024.

Komati has been repurposed but Mr Oberholzer told attendees of today’s meeting that Eskom is considering a different path for Hendrina, by allowing independent operators to table their plans for the plant.

It will be a public process, however, with multiple presentations expected once Eskom invites proposals.

Mr Oberholzer, who met with President Cyril Ramaphosa in January, promised to relay the chamber’s intentions during future engagements with government.

He believes a newly-appointed minister of electricity will be the catalyst to better link government departments, like the treasury and mineral resources, to not only reshape Eskom into different entities but to loosen the monopoly Eskom has had on power generation in the country.

The Hendrina plant can be repurposed into a gas generating facility, which Mr Oberholzer said he’s also fully in agreement with.

Despite his continued support for coal-powered stations, due to the country’s abundance of quality coal, he says alternative energy sources should be fully explored.

Mr Oberholzer has less than a month left in office but says he will personally advocate for Middelburg, and assist wherever he can to have the chamber’s plan to overtake Hendrina succeed.

“We need more towns like this,” he said.

• Get your copy of next week’s Middelburg Observer for an in-depth report on Eskom COO Jan Oberholzer’s vision for electricity supply in the future.

Back to top button