President Cyril Ramaphosa admitted that load-shedding had contributed to the economy's contraction in the first quarter of this year. However, it seems as if the president is cracking the whip at Eskom.
During his State of the Nation Address, President Cyril Ramaphosa said that while load-shedding's impact was felt on the economy, progress has been made at Eskom.
Ramaphosa highlighted that the lesson had been clear, in order to ensure growth in South Africa the nation needs a sustainable and reliable energy source.
The president said that the utility will not be allowed to miss payments, commenting that:
"With the current committed funding from government, outlined in the 2019 Budget, Eskom has sufficient cash to meet its obligations until the end of October 2019. For Eskom to default on its loans will cause a cross-default on its remaining debt and would have a huge impact on the already-constrained fiscus."
A Special Appropriations Bill will urgently be tabled in order to allocate a large amount of the R230 billion fiscal support the power utility over the next decade, in order to prevent any further economic decline, reports News24.
The culture of non-payment will no longer be accepted, with Ramaphosa adamant that consumers must pay:
"As a country, we must assert the principle that those who use electricity must pay for it. Failure to pay endangers our entire electricity supply, our economy and our efforts to create jobs. The days of boycotting payment are over. This is now the time to build, it is the time for all of us to make our own contribution."
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