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  • keyboard_arrow_rightRamaphosa: “South Africans would be first to know if grid collapses!”

Ramaphosa: “South Africans would be first to know if grid collapses!”

By: Natasha Archary

Ramaphosa denies abusing his power
Image: File

President Cyril Ramaphosa says South Africans would be the first to know if the Eskom power grid completely collapses.

This after the power utility proposed a new national standards document which indicates loadshedding schedules that go up to Stage 16.

While Ramaphosa and Eskom have stated that the grid remains stable and that loadshedding is in place to ensure that it remains so, Ramaphosa was facing questions from members of Parliament on Thursday, 11 May.

Ramaphosa was grilled about his appointment of Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramakgopa, whose position in Cabinet has still not been fleshed out.

Not only has Ramakgopa’s responsibilities not been outlined, the minister admitted that he doesn’t have decision making powers, and his role is much like that of a project manager.

In an interview with Sakina Kamwendo, Ramakgopa was left red-faced after the SABC journalist pointed out that his position didn’t make any sense.

Ramakgopa still has to get sign off from the Minister of Public Enterprises, Pravin Gordhan as well as Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe.

When asked what the possibility of a total collapse of the power grid was, the President said if that were to happen, South Africans would be the first to know.

“We continue to look at various options and scenarios and, obviously, when those events eventuate and are near to eventuating, indeed the people of South Africa will be the first to know.

The view we have taken in government, we need to take the practicality of that decsion. Engineers tell me that if you drive all units in one go it would lead to the grid collapsing. Loadshedding is the last resort. If we say there was no loadshedding the grid will collapse.”

Ramaphosa said allowing schools, hospitals, police stations and other important public facilities an exemption from loadshedding will lead to a grid collapse.

“If we want units to all generate electricity in one go, it would lead to the grid collapsing. Personally, I want all those hospitals, and schools to be exempted, but we are now faced with the impracticality of the situation.

We are saving the grid otherwise it will collapse if we implement that judgement in full.”

Ramaphosa said there were several scenarios and South Africans would be made aware is the grid was compromised.

The President said at the moment, the energy available is below 50% and this is causing severe strain on the power crisis.

Also read: Presidency responds to US Ambassador’s claims that SA supplied weapons to Russia

Written by: Natasha



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