The civil rights organisation AfriForum on 11 July 2019 submitted proposals and made proposals to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa), as well as suggested a possible solution after the past month’s electricity debacle. This action followed after Nersa announced a public meeting during which AfriForum gave its inputs.
Morné Mostert, AfriForum’s Head of Local Government Affairs, made a proposal to Nersa that the Tshwane Metro must abandon the new increased tariff and rather implement the previous, approved tariff of the 2018/2019 term with an increase to be considered by Nersa.
“This proposal is for AfriForum the only solution that the Tshwane Metro can currently implement that is legal, reasonable and transparent. Consumers will know exactly for what they are paying and it is a structure with which they are familiar. Poorer people will also not be affected so harshly by the increase when compared to the current implemented tariff. It will also offer the Metro the opportunity to still collect its money.”
Nersa strictly denounced the Tshwane Metro regarding the incomplete application to obtain permission for the implementation of the increased tariff. Nersa furthermore said that the Tshwane Metro has been given seven days to supply them with supplementary information on why the electricity tariff must be increased. This action followed after Nersa asked the Tshwane Metro to give them reasons for the increased tariff and the Metro failed to give them any reason whatsoever. The Tshwane Metro also failed to submit the cost of supply together with the application to Nersa. According to law, the Metro must submit these documents if a substantial structural or cost change takes place in the increased electricity tariff.
The Tshwane Metro also said in its presentation to Nersa and participating interested parties that the total increase is not above 13,8% as proposed by Nersa’s guidelines for municipalities. Mostert says however that this is not the case.
“According to the calculations of AfriForum and other interested parties, the total increase of electricity comes down to a percentage way above the proposed guideline. It is however part of the reasons why AfriForum is opposing the case so fiercely.”
AfriForum will still continue to keep an eye on the case to ensure that justice prevails and a reasonable tariff, that will not be prejudicial to the residents of Pretoria, is implemented.
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