Planned Eskom cuts avoided

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Next week’s planned power cuts in three Free State municipalities including the Mangaung Metro have been stopped. This comes after the FS Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) held a meeting with Eskom earlier today to discuss issues of non-payment.

According to Eskom provincial spokesperson Stefanie Jansen van Rensburg, a payment agreement has been reached in order to avoid the lights going out this festive season. “Eskom and Centlec have reached a payment agreement. Therefore, Eskom will not be continuing with planned interruptions,” she said.

Interruptions were planned to take place on 3 December 2019, after a notice was issued earlier in November to warn residents of the upcoming cuts. The electricity interruptions would have affected not just residents in Mangaung but those in the Mafube and Mantsopa Local Municipalities as well.

Jansen van Rensburg said that Mangaung had been making late payments to the utility provider in addition to millions of Rands being overdue.

“In terms of the Supply Agreement, MMM must pay Eskom within 15 days; however, Eskom has been receiving late payments since August 2019. The October 2019 account amounting to R148 million became overdue on 16 November 2019. In addition, R21 million is more than 90 days overdue,” she explained.

“Bloemfontein, Botshabelo, Thaba Nchu, Dewetsdorp, Wepener and Van Stadensrus, would have been impacted by the interruptions,” said Centlec spokesperson Lele Mamatu. –

Nomaqhawe Mtebele

nomaqhawe@mahareng.co.za