Pretoria - Leader of Build One SA (Bosa) Mmusi Maimane has accused Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan and the government for neglecting South Africans during their cry of help.
Maimane made the statement after Gordhan announced that he will be challenging the recent Pretoria High Court ruling that exempted public institutions, including schools, clinics, hospitals, and police stations, from load shedding.
Last week Friday, the Pretoria High Court gave Gordhan 60 days to adhere to a court ruling to ensure public healthcare facilities, schools, and police stations are exempted or protected from load shedding.
Maimane said Gordhan’s actions are telling South Africans that they have no right to electricity and safety.
“I want to tell you, sir, that next time a child dies in hospital because ultimately incubators are not working, that next time when crime goes up during load shedding, and children cannot study during load shedding, its on your hands,” he said.
Maimane said what is disturbing is that the government made it possible to provide ministers with alternative power supply during load shedding.
“One day history may recall that when people cried out for help, you opposed them and even opposed them in court. But when your colleagues inside government demanded alternative energy, you stood with them,” he said.
In a statement, Gordhan said his department had serious concerns about the implications of the court ruling on the current efforts to stabilise the national grid and get the country out of load shedding.
"The department has studied the ruling and has determined through legal advice that the prudent step to take is to lodge an appeal to set aside the ruling and allow for the ongoing efforts to end load shedding to proceed without putting undue risk on the country’s grid infrastructure," Gordhan said.