Explosive Allegations: Eskom Engineered Load-Shedding and BEE Delayed Kusile

Estimated read time 2 min read

Eskom generates approximately 95% of the electricity used in South Africa and approximately 45% of the electricity used in Africa. Eskom generates, transmits and distributes electricity to industrial, mining, commercial, agricultural and residential customers and redistributors.

Former South African President Thabo Mbeki has ignited a firestorm with startling claims regarding the energy giant Eskom. Mbeki alleges that Eskom, rather than government mismanagement, orchestrated the infamous load-shedding crisis that plagued the nation in 2008. Additionally, he asserts that Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) requirements were leveraged to deliberately stall the completion of the Kusile power station.

In a recent revelation, Mbeki refuted the prevailing narrative that governmental failures were solely responsible for the early waves of load-shedding. He contends that Eskom, as early as 1998, had forewarned the government about the urgent need for new generation capacity and the potential for load-shedding by 2007. However, Mbeki insists that the crisis was internally engineered by Eskom executives, disregarding employees’ warnings of an impending coal shortage.

“The January 2008 national load-shedding was completely unnecessary and had been deliberately engineered from within Eskom,” Mbeki stated, dismissing claims of government culpability.

Furthermore, Mbeki alleges mismanagement and corruption within Eskom, citing deliberate delays in constructing new power stations as key factors exacerbating the energy crisis.

Regarding the Kusile power station, Mbeki revealed that despite seven years of construction, not a single megawatt of electricity was generated. He claimed that Eskom introduced BEE requirements, causing a dispute with the Indian company contracted for construction, ultimately leading to contract termination.

Independent energy expert Mohamed Madhi finds Mbeki’s claims credible, citing the sudden onset and subsequent disappearance of load-shedding in 2008 as unusual phenomena warranting further investigation. Madhi emphasizes Eskom’s precipitous decline from a global powerhouse to an entity plagued by energy shortages.

Mbeki’s assertions have sparked renewed scrutiny of Eskom’s operations and raised questions about the intersection of politics and energy management in South Africa. As investigations unfold, the truth behind these explosive allegations remains to be fully unearthed.

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