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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist


Presidency dismisses load shedding claims as ‘ill-guided political ploy’

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said Eskom’s performance has defied all the doomsday predictions.


As the country heads to the 7th general elections,  the Presidency said claims about the imminent return of load shedding were “factually incorrect and an ill-guided political ploy to mislead the country”.

The Presidency said it had noted a social media post purporting to be a power alert and advising South Africans of imminent load shedding.

“Following 62 days of no load shedding, there is growing and overwhelming support for Eskom’s sustained and rigorous effort to self-correct, stabilise and strengthen the generation system,” said the Presidency.

Defied doomsday

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said Eskom’s performance has defied all the doomsday predictions and silenced many so-called “critics”.

“The Ministry remains confident that the work we have been leading over the past 12 months, supported by the many competent Eskom employees and its Leadership team, will continue in the coming months and ultimately place the  country on a firm foundation of energy security to support our inclusive economic growth and development agenda.”

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The Presidency said the work is buoyed by an across-the-fleet improvement in energy availability and reduction in breakdowns, following a conscious decision in March 2023 to invest in heightened planned maintenance.

“In addition to no load shedding, this work has meant that, over the past eight weeks, Eskom has significantly reduced the amount of diesel used by the Open-Cycle Gas Turbines (OCGTs).”

No load shedding

Meanwhile, Eskom said it “noted with concern the fake news trending on social media regarding load shedding resuming on 30 May 2024”.

The parastatal said generation availability continued to perform well as a result of the Generation Operational Recovery Plan, which commenced in March 2023, as well as “intensive” planned maintenance.

“Unplanned outages are averaging at 12,500MW, below what was anticipated for our winter outlook. The energy availability factor (EAF) of four of our power stations is performing above 70%. Our year-to-date EAF is improving gradually and is currently at 60.73%.

“Eskom will provide regular updates and the next update will be on Friday, 31 May 2024,” the utility said.

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