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AfriForum says public participation stops Eskom from exploiting public

June 14, 2018 deur Natasha Venter

The civil rights organisation AfriForum said that public participation resulted in the National Energy Regulator (Nersa) granting less than half the amount in Eskom’s regulatory clearing account application (RCA). Nersa today approved R32,69 billion of Eskom’s requested R67 billion.

AfriForum was one of the 96 stakeholders who made oral comments during the RCA sittings. In addition, a total of 85 000 pieces of written comments have been submitted.

Morné Mostert, head of local government at AfriForum, says communities in South Africa can no longer bear the burden of Eskom’s corruption and poor management.

“The multi-year price determination process allows Eskom to recover justified costs. AfriForum is asking for reasons for Nersa’s decision today because we want to determine if only justified costs have been taken into account. Nersa has undertaken to provide these reasons, but wishes to meet with Eskom first, because of confidentiality.”

Nersa’s decision comes in the midst of a court application brought by Eskom against Nersa to review the energy regulator’s decision of December 2017 to increase power tariffs by 5,23%. If Eskom’ s application succeeds, it can have a cumulative effect on power prices and put the burdened consumer under more pressure.

According to Mostert, Eskom has to focus on addressing internal problems and historical losses instead of making expensive court cases against Nersa.

“Nersa said they would announce before 30 September how the R32,69 billion will be recovered. AfriForum will participate in this and future processes to ensure fairness for communities,” Mostert concludes.