With Nersa hearings on Eskom’s 33% tariff increase application due to kick off early next week, beginning with Cape Town, the pressure is building up to what could be the proverbial last straw which breaks both Eskom’s and consumer’s backs.
Electricity users, already preparing for an increase of 33% from Eskom’s RCA claims, might have to drastically curtail usage as they face another barrage of electricity price hikes later this year. Ted Blom, a partner at Mining & Energy Advisors and Energy Expert Coalition (EECO), estimates Eskom’s MYPD 4 application later this year could see another tariff hike exceeding 50% as Eskom is desperate for more money to satisfy voracious cash guzzling activities amid falling electricity consumption.
Blom has been extremely critical of Eskom’s exorbitant increases which he believes are just another ploy to fund corruption. Blom was the first analyst to blow the whistle on Eskom’s corrupt practices back in 2009, some of which was confirmed by the Public Protector in 2016.
During testimony to Parliament at the 2017 Public Enterprises hearings over Eskom corruption, Blom again took parliament and the public through the long road of corruption which began in 2001. Notwithstanding firm evidence provided by Blom, Government has elected to only backdate the Commission of Enquiry to 2010.
“This conveniently excludes three of the biggest and most corrupt deals in the history of South Africa – the contracts to build Medupi, Kusile and Ingulla,” states Blom. “The cumulative cost of these corrupt deals have cost SA and the electricity consumer over R250bn more than it should have – and construction is only around halfway. The publlic cannot be expected to fund this through tariff hikes,” emphasises Blom.
Eskom is destroying the South African economy and has killed hundreds of thousands of jobs by prematurely forcing hundreds of business and mine closures through excessive electricity tariffs.
Blom has called for support and input from electricity users as he prepares for presentations and arguments to Nersa at upcoming hearings in all nine provinces. Concerned businesses and individuals are encouraged to provide input at the Energy Expert Coalition’s website, eeco.co.za.