Johannesburg - One of the reasons Eskom is applying for an electricity hike is because the average annual salary of one of its employees is expected to be R820,000 in 2017 and 2018, according to a report on Saturday.
Beeld newspaper reported that Eskom's total salaries for about 45,600 employees at that time would be about R37 billion.
These figures are one of the reasons Eskom gave to the National Energy Regulatory of SA (Nersa) as part of its request to increase electricity tariffs from April 1, with 16 percent for the next five years.
Beeld reported that the information was part of Eskom's submissions handed in to Nersa.
In the documents Eskom claimed that in the current book year, the average salary per worker is R633,000 annually.
According to the documents, the reason for the high salaries was because new power stations needed more employees, and there was need to get more skilled workers and to keep them.
However, the National Union of Metalworkers of SA's Karl Cloete told Beeld that their members at Eskom do not get salaries like that.
“We want to see who gets paid so much that the average is so high. We do know that Eskom's top-managers have been getting big bonuses and increases in the past decade,” Cloete said.
Investment Solutions economist Chris Hart told the newspaper that no company in the private sector could afford to pay salaries like that.
Eskom's spokeswoman Hillary Joffe did not deny the proposed salary increase.
Nersa is expected to announce Eskom's tariff increase on February 28. - Sapa