Today, I received an extraordinary reply from the Presidency in response to a Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) request for the Cabinet Briefing Report from Deputy President Mabuza on the work of the joint Special Cabinet Committee on Eskom on the 27th February 2019 (see reply attached). The Presidency have confirmed that the records and report that we have requested do not exist.
This committee was established in response to recent electricity supply disruptions and the negative impact on the economy. However, what is astounding is the response from the Presidency. The Cabinet statement can be found here which confirms the existence of such a report.
What we are left with is either 1) Cabinet is lying to us and no report was actually prepared or delivered by the Deputy President or 2) The ANC does not want to release such a report and is covering up the true extent of the absolute chaos and crisis within Eskom.
Eskom has been hampered by corruption, costs and capacity issues. State Capture ripped the heart out of Eskom with corrupt contracts and tenders around diesel and coal. Eskom costs have soared – linked to the failing coal power plants of Medupi and Kusile with massive cost overruns, excessive executive pay and a bloated work force. The entity has failed to introduce new capacity and maintain existing capacity which has left South Africa at the mercy of rolling blackouts.
With Moody’s reserving their ratings judgment, the sword is hanging over the head of our economy and it has Eskom written all over it.
We need the ANC to be honest and upfront with us about the problems at Eskom. We cannot have further issues hidden and covered up. We call on the ANC to make public the reports on Eskom to keep the public informed. This crisis affects every part of society and we deserve to know what mess the ruling government has dropped us in.
The DA will continue to fight for a competitive, stable, affordable and transparent green energy sector.