Eskom, the South African power giant, has declared that load shedding will ascend to stage 5 from Monday, 24th July. This shocking announcement comes on the heels of further hold-ups in the restoration of the utility’s generating units.
A Leap to Stage 5
Stage 5 load shedding will debut at 14h00 and endure until 05h00 on Tuesday. Following this, stage 4 load shedding will persist indefinitely. This sudden alteration in schedule has left businesses and consumers alike struggling to adapt.
This adjustment transpired a day after Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, the Minister of Electricity, rebuked Eskom for its instability. The minister asserted, “I think it’s particularly unhelpful when Eskom has to go out from time to time with the announcement of the intensity of load shedding. I think there was one day where we shifted the intensity of load shedding about three times in a space of about six hours.”
According to Ramokgopa, the unpredictability hampers the capability of businesses and households to plan ahead, especially when they’re anticipating lower stages of load shedding.
Promising A More Reliable Service
In an effort to enhance reliability, the minister explained that once extra megawatts are supplemented to the grid, some of these problematic units will undergo service.
Ramokgopa insisted, “This will give us an opportunity that when we make a promise of a Stage ‘X’ you won’t find that much later we have to make amendments to that announcement, which undermine the statements Eskom releases from time to time.”
Addressing the power conundrum, Ramokgopa stressed that additional interventions are necessary to help Eskom overturn the situation. He emphasized that, “The levels of load shedding are not going down to where we want it to be… I do promise that we’re going to address this with the urgency that the state is required.”
With stage 5 load shedding set to start, the pressure is on Eskom and the government to find effective solutions to curb the country’s escalating power crisis.