Cape Town - The "challenges" faced by state power utility Eskom were an impediment to investment, president Cyril Ramaphosa said on Wednesday, but government was doing everything possible to ensure sustainable energy sources.
"Obviously, energy plays a key role in the economic life of our country, and when factories and mines have to shut down because they don't have enough energy, it has a negative impact. If this persists, it could lead us to recession," said the president at a media briefing in Johannesburg.
Ramaphosa cut short a state visit to Egypt when the country was plunged into unprecedented stage six loadshedding on Monday. He was widely criticised as displaying a lack of leadership for leaving the country amidst a national crisis. Earlier on Wednesday, he said that the power utility had lost 2000 megawatts due to "sabotage".
"So we are now taking all these actions ... and that is why we have insisted that there must be an emergency recovery plan that is going to make sure that we restore stability to the network. That is going to be done so that we do not have a catastrophic situation that is going to have a negative impact on our energy."
The president said would-be investors had been told that the country was grappling with energy challenges. "We have been pretty upfront, open and honest about the challenges that Eskom faces and efforts that we are putting in place to address that."