- President Cyril Ramaphosa vowed that significant moves are being made to address the current energy crisis
- However, the leader lashed out at the culture of non-payment, which he blames for escalating the issues at Eskom
- Ramaphosa says the power cuts had come at a time where South Africa is attempting to garner investment in the country
President Cyril Ramaphosa says that while every effort is being taken to address South Africa's energy problems, he criticised citizens who fail to pay the entity for adding to the issue.
Briefly.co.za reported that a technical breakdown at the Medupi power station had contributed to the factors that resulted in Stage 2 load-shedding last week.
In his weekly letter to the nation, Ramaphosa reminded citizens of their responsibility to pay their bills:
"Our citizens deserve to be able to conduct their lives, go to school and operate their businesses confident that they will not be plunged into darkness without warning. At the same time, as citizens, we must understand that when we do not pay, we are part of the problem."
Ramaphosa says that 'individual users' owe the cash-strapped entity 'huge amounts':
"This is the time for a frank discussion on the payment of owed money to Eskom by individual users. The culture of non-payment exists in several parts of the country. Boycotting payment for services had a place in apartheid South Africa.
"It was an effective tool to mobilise communities against an unjust system. But it has no place in present day South Africa. If public utilities like Eskom are to survive, then all users need to pay for the services they receive."
The president says that load-shedding had contributed to investor unease at a point in time when he is trying to attract capital into the country. Ramaphosa had recently discussed the issues facing Eskom during his working visit to the UK, where he had done his best to portray SA as a prime investment opportunity.
However, Ramaphosa understands why citizens are unhappy about the current situation:
"It is also understandable that South Africans became frustrated and angry. This latest round of load-shedding makes even clearer the urgency with which we must act to protect our energy supply."
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