NEWS

SA ‘up in arms’ following electricity hike by Nersa- ‘we’re enough’

A family in Soweto and the one in the ‘burbs’ face hard times following electricity hike.

One in affluent suburbs is struggling to keep up with high cost of living, and the one in Soweto complains of (izinyoka) illegal connections, school fees, security at home and increasing food prices.

But what will affect them most is the increase of electricity tariff following the announcement yesterday that Nersa (National Energy Regulator of South Africa) by 18.65%.

The announcement already has solicited anger and discomfort amongst everyone in mzansi, some calling for a boycott and marching to Parliament.

The unfathomable increase was made following Eskom’s request and will come into effect in April 2023.

Municipalities are over reliant on profit-making from electricity sales to balance their budgets.

Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen has also written to President Cyril Ramaphosa, requesting an urgent meeting about Eskom and the growing power crisis.

Build One South Africa leader Mmusi Maimane said Eskom’s electricity tariff increase had reached the highest level of disrespect towards families and businesses.

“We are paying more and more for electricity while the government delivers less and less. The most frustrating thing is that the ministers do not feel the pain and they can go drink champagne in Davos and then here we pay for their generators.”

Ramaphosa is off to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum, and he has been slammed for taking the trip as the country is plunged into darkness yet again; and was quoted as having said “my hands are tight” on tariff hike. We expected a lot better from you, Prez, as the same branches who voted you back for the second term are now Gatvol with these increases.

Democratic Alliance (DA) shadow minister of public enterprises Ghaleb Cachalia, who labelled the increase as “an official sanctioned daylight robbery against consumers”, called on South Africans to stand up and say “enough is enough”.

 “This tariff increase is now pouring fuel on the fire and the DA believes that this can’t go on any longer. The Party will explore the option of mass action against the incapable ANC-led government,” said Cachalia in a statement.

“Just as the ANC government has failed to cushion South Africans from the high cost of living, Nersa made the ill-considered decision to allow Eskom to essentially demand more money from consumers over a product they cannot deliver. In the circumstances, these tariffs are unconscionable.”

The FF Plus said the electricity tariff increase was “out of touch” with economic realities in the country.

“It will have the greatest impact on the agricultural sector which is, like the rest of the country’s business sector, already struggling to survive due to load shedding.

“The ANC paid almost no attention to the poor living in townships and informal settlements over the past 30 years,” added FF Plus.

The ruling party also made a consideration on Soweto electricity debt write-off, but that could take years to come into effect and this means more burden for a family depended on grants in Naledi, Soweto.

So, either family (you and I included) face bleak future as energy is gonna be way too expensive.

We might as well kiss goodbye (pun intended) potential investments.

If this is a plan to privatise the ailing utility, then it is working, finish & klaar!

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