Maluti to pay Eskom more than R8 million monthly

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REFILWE MEKOA

Maluti-a-Phofung municipality will pay Eskom more than R8 million to cover their debt.

According to Mayor Vusi Tshabala, their payment plan will end by August 2015. This after the municipal council consists of Qwaqwa, Harrismith and Kestel finalised their payment plan last week. Tshabalala said the municipality’s debt is approximately R427 million.

“We were actually undercharging our community. We are paying Eskom 35cent between morning to twelve o’clock in the afternoon, 65 cent from twelve o’clock in the afternoon till four o’clock and from four o’clock until evening it is R2.13. We should, however, keep in mind that most factories at night or evening don’t consume a lot of electricity,” he said.

Tshabalala explained that they have requested the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) to look into the electricity charges. Eskom earlier warned that they would terminate electricity to Maluti-a-Phofung as well as two other Eastern Free State municipalities on August 8.

They however gave Maluti-a-Phofung, Dihlabeng, and Ngwathe till the end of August to submit their payment plans. Ngwathe comprises Parys, Koppies and Heilbron. Dihlabeng consists of Bethlehem, Clarens, Fouriesburg and Paul Roux.