Unit 2 at Eskom’s Grootvlei Power Station in Mpumalanga that had to be shut down last month after a fire broke out is back online, electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa announced on Sunday.
He made the announcement on Sunday during a media briefing in Pretoria where he was speaking on the progress made regarding the Energy Action Plan (EAP) that was announced in July last year by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Ramokgopa said the reintroduction of Unit 2 back into the Grootvlei station was the “highlight of the week”.
“I’m happy to indicate that the Unit 2 that was damaged partly by fire, as I did indicate earlier which were the control and instrumentation components, is back online.
“I really want to commend the head of generation Mr (Bheki) Nxumalo and the general manager Tshepiso (Temo) and the rest of the team at Grootvlei for returning the unit as promised,” Ramokgopa said.
Eskom said at the time of the fire on July 22, that the damage was not extensive. An Eskom spokesperson at the time said there were indications that an oil spill in the boiler room had caused the fire, damaging components of the unit.
The minister also conducted a site inspection of Grootvlei after the fire.
The damaged unit is one of three operating at Grootvlei, one of the country’s oldest power stations, and supplied around 1,200 MW to the grid.
Ramokgopa said the restoration of the unit was a testimony to the pledge the government has made to be more transparent on promises they make.
South Africa is currently experiencing Stage 1 and 3 load shedding this weekend.