FS Number 1 on Eskom’s debtors list


Eskom has its hands full with handling debt from defaulting municipalities that total approximately R10 billion, with municipalities in the Free State accounting for over half of that figure.
According to Khulu Phasiwe, Eskom’s national spokesperson, Free State municipalities owed the power utility R4.481 billion, with Mpumalanga and the North West owing R 2.324 billion and R843 million respectively in February 2017.
“The biggest defaulters in the Free State are Maluti-a-Phofung, Matjhabeng, Ngwathe, Nala, Moqghaka, Dihlabeng and Nketoana. Eskom has signed payment arrangements, supported by Council resolutions, with the defaulting municipalities. Most of these municipalities are adhering to the signed payment arrangements and are now paying, but some are battling to honour the payment arrangements between the power utility and themselves,” Phasiwe said.
Meanwhile, municipal mayors attending the South African Local Government Association (Salga) in Cape Town last week, discussed ways to work around the debt various municipalities in the country owe to Eskom.
Mayors requested Salga to lobby for the writing off of all debt of municipalities to Eskom as a way of ensuring the financial viability of these municipalities.
Phasiwe said over 42% of Eskom’s revenue comes from municipalities, however, other measures are being looked into to ensure that the funds are recovered. “At the moment, no debt write-offs are on the cards,” he said. – Pulane Choane