The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has noted with annoyance the president’s state of the nation address (SONA) on energy matters. The perpetuation of the neoliberal approach which seeks to destroy Eskom in favour of private capital is disturbing. The NUM marched against the introduction of the IPPs. We indicated that the IPPs are parasites that are sucking Eskom to death. The announcement by the president that more IPPs are going to be signed is a sign that the aim is to destroy Eskom.
In his address, the president announced that 2000MW of power will be procured from IPPs. IPPs are slowly introduced to replace Eskom.
The president further mentioned that Eskom is already restructured into three entities. The NUM is on record against this unbundling. As the NUM we don’t believe unbundling will solve Eskom’s problems. We view the unbundling of Eskom as preparation for privatisation. Eskom has five major problems which are the 480 billion debt, the cost of primary energy, failure to collect its revenue resulting in high municipal debt and the drop in sales. These problems cannot be solved by mere unbundling Eskom. We need solutions that are tailored to each problem.
The NUM is also against the idea of increasing tariffs as announced by the president. This is an attack on the working class and the poor. Poor people will not be able to afford expensive electricity from the IPPs.
For more information, please contact:
Joseph Montisetsi, NUM President, 082 809 2391
The National Union of Mineworkers
7 Rissik Street.
Tel: 011 377 2111 Cell: 083 809 3257