The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in Highveld had its follow up meeting with Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordan on the 13th February 2023, this meeting was informed by outstanding issues that were never discussed in our previous meeting with the Minister.

We have managed to outline in details the following issues, namely ESKOM outages and maintenance philosophy and the issue of Just Energy Transition (JET).

The NUM always raised a concern that when the Units are undergoing a process of outages, they come back underperforming. This can be attributed to poor workmanship and sub standard spares that are procured.

We also advised the Minister to look into the maintenance of ESKOM Power Stations that is outsourced. This has elements of corruption and leads to poor performance of the plants.

“We made it categorically clear that ESKOM Rotek Industry must be a preferred bidder when it comes to maintenance and cleaning of the plants. However, in most cases because of corruption, you will have managers bringing their own contractors to perform maintenance and cleaning, merely because they are benefiting from those contractors. Some of the managers of these contractors belong to them and their immediate family members. The NUM will be providing a list of those companies that are suspected to belong to certain managers, their friends and families. The NUM is committed to fighting corruption because it is the main reason that leads to load shedding,” said Bizzah Motubatse, NUM Highveld Regional Chairperson.

On JET the NUM made it clear that Just Energy Transition must be just, the NUM rejected with contempt it deserved the rush rush approach of JET, the USA must not dictate terms because we are a sovereign country.

We also raised a concern with the minister because broader consultation with the affected communities and workers is not done, it is done through media, which we believe that it has a potential of falsehood and perpetual confusion to the communities.

The NUM is not fundamentally opposed to JET; we are calling for JET that will not take away the employability of our members. We want a JET that will secure jobs for the downtrodden and the marginalized. We also called for the Minister to look into carbon capture, in our view as the NUM carbon capture is the ultimate and most practical solution.

For more detailed information, please contact:
Malekutu Bizzah Motubatse, NUM Highveld Regional Chairperson, 082 264 6533
Thapelo Malekutu, NUM Highveld Regional Deputy Regional Secretary, 063 601 9005

The National Union of Mineworkers

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