Johannesburg - Electricity Minister Kgosientso Ramokgopa says there is progress in reducing the country’s load shedding strain.
Ramokgopa briefed the media on the progress of the Energy Action Plan at the GCIS offices in Tshwane on Sunday morning.
Ramokgopa said the various positive developments have contributed to the steady and stable improvement.
“We have had 16 hours of load shedding at 8 hours stage 3, this is thanks to the hard work of people at Eskom as we aim to improve.
“We are starting to balance out where supply is higher than demand. With a generation buffer, this will allow us to do planned maintenance.
“This also allows for reduction and intensity of load shedding,” he said.
Ramokgopa said because of the recovery in generation capacity this allowed for planned maintenance in winter.
“This allows for maintenance. This is symptomatic of a system that's recovered.”
Despite all the good progress made, the minister has highlighted that some of the current challenges were a result of the failure to restore the electricity supply after load shedding.
“At the moment we are averaging 1,503MW a day on outage slips, down from a high in May of about 4,000MW.”
Amongst the challenges, was the issue of transmission which he said would be addressed with urgency as more people connect to the grid.
“We need to resolve this with finances. We have drawn up a report on this that says first we need to tap into the rich liquidity of the private sector.
“Second, we cannot relinquish ownership. Eskom must be solely responsible for the ownership and management of the grid. There must be energy sovereignty.”
Ramokgopa assured South Africans that they are also dealing with the matters of fraud and crime which has strained Eskom and its power stations with the help of the State Security Agency and the SAPS.
“We have found linkages between syndicates, but I will leave that for now. I can just assure you that there has been significant progress.
“I eat, sleep and breathe the resolution of load shedding and I am confident that we will resolve this,” he said.
Due to the consistent available generation capacity, load shedding will continue to be suspended from midnight until 4pm and Stage 3 load shedding will continue to be implemented from 4pm until midnight, daily until further notice.