Speech on the Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report of the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises
Speech by ACDP MP, Steve Swart

Issued by the ACDP Parliamentary Media Office

Loadshedding is expected to continue for a number of years

Dec 5, 2023

Thank you, House Chair.

The Department of Public Enterprises has oversight over a number of SOEs, including Eskom, Transnet, SAA, Denel, Safcor and Alexcor.

We are all fully aware of the impact that Eskom has had and the power outages that have devastated households, businesses, individuals and, of course, also impacted other infrastructure such as water, IT, service delivery, health and education.

And whilst new reforms and investments are being considered, loadshedding is continuing and is expected to continue for a number of years.

In this regard, the ACDP welcomes the full bench of the North Gauteng High Court which last week declared loadshedding at schools, hospitals and police stations unconstitutional and gave the Minister of Electricity two months to address this issue.

Now, obviously, the challenge will be how to implement this judgement at these essential areas and that is going to be the question, and whether the Minister could, in fact, be found in contempt of court if steps were not taken to address these issues.

The ACDP is also deeply concerned about the logistics crisis at Transnet. Transnet Freight Rail was the heartbeat of the economy, particularly to enable the mines to carry cargo around the country.

Sadly, due to mismanagement and an inability to protect rail lines from thieves, freight volumes have plummeted with the Minerals Council estimating inefficiencies may have cost the country a staggering R150 billion in forfeited mineral exports last year alone.

Some estimate that this crisis at Transnet is even worse than the crisis at Eskom and clearly far more needs to be done to address the serious logistics challenge at our rails and ports with the tens of thousands of containers that are waiting to be offloaded.

I thank you.

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