Stage 6 for Eskom, stage 8 for Ramaphosa and other highlights from 'Vrye Weekblad'

Here's what's hot in the latest edition of the Afrikaans digital weekly

13 December 2019 - 10:00 By timeslive
We have been left in the dark again.
We have been left in the dark again.
Image: 123RF/rasslava

If mineral resources and energy minister Gwede Mantashe had political will and a sense of urgency, he could have quickly signed a few documents and SA would not have been powerless this week.

Monday's stage 6 load-shedding lasted for only a few hours before we went back to stage 4, but it sent shock waves through the economy and citizens that will reverberate for a long time to come. 

South Africans looked into the abyss and saw that this ship was sinking.

It was the worst week in President Cyril Ramaphosa's political career. Even his most loyal supporters are no longer buying his excuses. He is the president, not just a bystander. He is the man who promised us a New Dawn. He was supposed to be the modern Moses who would lead us from the Jacob Zuma desert. 

Explanations about wet coal due to the rain were on the table to explain the mess. We've been hearing that since 2014.

On Monday, Ramaphosa was still bragging in his weekly letter about how impressive Medupi is, and just a few hours later a conveyor belt apparently broke and the power station ground to a halt. 

Then we had stage 6, which meant we had lost 6,000 megawatt, and Ramaphosa had to rush back from Egypt to tell us how shocked he was and that sabotage was responsible for some of the mess. Someone at Eskom allegedly switched off an instrument that rendered the steam kettles useless. 

Read all about it in this week's edition of Afrikaans digital weekly Vrye Weekblad.

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Government and Eskom's credibility is at an all-time low. Nobody would be surprised if we were suddenly informed that stage 7 or stage 8 (12 hours of load-shedding per day) is implemented. 

The economy shrunk by 0,6% in the third quarter, and this week's closing or partial closing of mines and factories due to blackouts was catastrophic. 

A downgrade to junk status in March and more job losses now seem unavoidable, unless a miracle happens. 

We now know that Ramaphosa is no Superman. Not even a distant cousin of the superhero, in fact. 

Read the full article in this week's Vrye Weekblad

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