Hastily-convened Energy Indaba gets under way on Thursday

06 December 2017 - 16:48 By Ernest Mabuza
Energy Minister David Mahlobo. File photo.
Energy Minister David Mahlobo. File photo.
Image: Supplied

Experts in the energy sector will share solutions on how the sector will re-energise the economy to achieve radical socio-economic transformation while creating the necessary jobs.

This is according to the Department of Energy‚ which will host a two-day Energy Indaba at the Gallagher Estate Convention Centre in Johannesburg starting on Thursday.

President Jacob Zuma will be a keynote speaker at the event where over 700 representatives from a number of energy sectors will attend.

The indaba has come under criticism from a number of quarters.

The South African Academy of Engineers called for the “Energy Indaba” to be postponed until January next year in order to allow for proper planning.

This included the release of a draft Integrated Resource Plan by the Department of Energy to allow meaningful participation by all relevant stakeholders.

A number of environmental organisations also said the Indaba did not allow for all expert views to be adequately considered‚ particularly in relation to renewables‚ nor did it make adequate provision for community and civil society voices to be heard.

They wrote a letter to Energy Minister David Mahlobo on November 28 expressing concern about the Indaba.

They said it was not clear what the purpose of the Indaba was.

“If the indaba is being held in an attempt to solicit public participation on the draft Integrated Energy Plan and the Integrated Resource Plan Update‚ it fails to provide an adequate or reasonable opportunity for interested parties to be heard. We dispute that the indaba can serve as any public participation process for decision-making‚” the more than 20 organisations said in an open letter.