Gopolang Moloko
1 minute read
26 Nov 2019
11:30 am

We are not privatising Eskom – Ramaphosa

Gopolang Moloko

The president says government plans to improve the power utility to be a global competitor.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, left, with Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

As President Cyril Ramaphosa visited Eskom’s Medupi Power Station in Lephalale, alongside Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and Eskom acting CEO Jabu Mabuza, he highlighted that the station stood to be the world’s fourth-largest coal-fired power station once completed.

There was still work to be completed on the power station in order to have all units fully functional, and Ramaphosa confirmed this would be completed next year.

“It cost more than anticipated,” but the country had built a landmark achievement, he said. Addressing the more than 4,000-strong Eskom workforce, he said government would not allow Eskom to be privatised.

“We are not going to sell Eskom.

“We owe a lot of money but we will continue to support Eskom for it to prevail. It’s going to continue being owned by government.”

Wearing an orange bib, the president told workers and staff that privatising Eskom would be like selling the family silver. “You don’t do that.”

The president said it was necessary to split Eskom unto three divisions  – generation, transmission, and distribution – saying this was needed to improve its efficiency and make it competitive. “It is not privatisation.”

He said government planned to improve Eskom to be a global competitor.

“We’ve got to stay ahead while operating at the same level as others. We are not going to let Eskom go down. Eskom is too important to the life of our country.”

He signed off by thanking all parties who were responsible for building a “better Eskom”.

(Additional reporting by News24 Wire)

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