eskom load shedding jellyfish

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Parliament tables DA’s Cheaper Electricity Bill that opposes Eskom

The DA has asked MP’s to put their “differences aside” and support the introduction of this Bill as South Africa’s energy security “depends on it”.

eskom load shedding jellyfish

Image via Pexels/Gursharndeep

The Democratic Alliance’s (DA) Cheaper Electricity Bill has been tabled in Parliament, and the party is elated as they believe the only way to break South Africa’s electricity crisis is by breaking Eskom’s monopoly on energy generation.

What is the Cheaper Electricity Bill?

“South Africans have lost faith in the utility which can no longer be trusted to keep the lights on. Eskom has effectively become a zombie enterprise that is both overinflated and riddled with corruption. Furthermore, it has a complete monopoly over the generation and distribution of electricity.”

Democratic Alliance

The Cheaper Electricity Bill is anticipated to divide Eskom into two entities: an energy generation vessel and a separate distribution entity, that works simultaneously, without disrupting the other.

This Bill will allow Independent Power Producers (IPPs) to compete on an equal footing, in the energy generation sector, and the DA plans for sufficient metros to source energy directly from IPPs and electricity distribution should be more “stable, cleaner, and cheaper”.

DA will hand over its energy plan at the Union Buildings

“The introduction of this Bill couldn’t have come at a more apt time in light of the recent rolling blackouts experienced last week. These power cuts came a month after the utility assured the public that there would be no planned rolling blackouts, for the months of September and October, following the party’s revelations that the utility had warned municipalities of the possibility of imminent blackouts.”

Democratic Alliance

DA is calling the 121 MP’s who opposed the Eskom Special Appropriation Bill being passed, and asks that everyone should put their “differences aside” and support the introduction of this Bill as South Africa’s energy security “depends on it”.

Over 100 MP’s opposed the Eskom Special Appropriations Bill being passed

On Tuesday, Parliament held an Eskom Special Appropriations Bill Debate, and the Bill will be sent to the National Council of Provinces for concurrence.

The debate was fired up, as fierce opposition voted against the Bill being approved, and the DA further questioned Parliament’s naiveté with “trusting” Eskom with more money, as it is reported that R21 billion “disappeared” last year; the party accused parliament of rewarding a culture of state capture, as the bill serves as a “blank cheque” and diminishes the importance of oversight and accountability for public money.

The government is scheduled to hand out R59 billion over the next two financial years, and R23 billion has been allocated to Eskom annually for the next 10 years; this bill allows the Finance Minister to transfer money to Eskom without any pre-conditions being met.