Indecisive leadership on energy security paralysing SA, says Black Business Council

'Dismay and disappointment' at lack of urgency

22 September 2022 - 12:13
By Amanda Khoza
Black Business Council CEO Kganki Matabane. File photo.
Image: ANTONIO MUCHAVE Black Business Council CEO Kganki Matabane. File photo.

The Black Business Council (BBC) has slammed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s cabinet, saying it “lacks urgency” to deal with the country’s energy crisis.

“The BBC is disheartened that the cabinet met for the entire day only to issue a statement that they are still in discussion,” BBC CEO Kganki Matabane said on Thursday.

“We view this as government being run through public relations trying to create an impression they are doing something while actually doing nothing to resolve blackouts,”  said Matabane.

The council’s views come after the cabinet released a statement on Wednesday afternoon following its scheduled virtual meeting, saying it was “still deliberating on these reports”. It had received a briefing by public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan on the capacity of Eskom and a progress report from the technical committee of the national energy crisis committee.

The cabinet said after further interventions, an announcement would be made.

Cabinet spokesperson Phumla Williams said the government regretted the intermittent load-shedding and an announcement on the crisis would be made soon. It is not yet clear when this will be made.

Matabane said the council “noted with dismay and disappointment the lack of urgency by government to deal with load-shedding”.

“The indecisive leadership of President Ramaphosa and his cabinet on the matter of energy security continues to paralyse the country and its economy.”

He said the government’s focus should be on stabilising and improving the performance of the existing fleet of Eskom “as this is the only technically sound and proven method” that can end blackouts.

“The obsession with technologies that do not provide baseload, such as solar and wind, will not solve load-shedding, as evidenced by Germany and other European countries reviving their coal-powered stations,” Matabane said.

He again called on Ramaphosa to “immediately fire the incompetent and non-performing board, CEO and COO of Eskom, who are more focused on promoting solar energy instead of fixing Eskom”.


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