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City of Joburg says process to supply Soweto with power is underway

The Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee had argued that not every family in the township could afford prepaid electricity.Image: Matthews Baloyi

The Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee had argued that not every family in the township could afford prepaid electricity.Image: Matthews Baloyi

Published Jul 6, 2022

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The City of Johannesburg said it was still in engagements concerning the long awaited switch over of Eskom power supply from Eskom to City Power.

Parts of the township have been left in the dark following the refusal of some communities in the township to be placed on pre prepaid metering systems.

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The system would enable community members to manage their electricity usage and buy electricity in advance.

The Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee had argued that not every family in the township could afford prepaid electricity.

Mayoral spokesperson Mabine Seabe said Mayor Mpho Phalatse was in constant communication with the leaders of the Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee. He said the mayor would respond to complaints the residents had with regard to the electricity crisis.

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"We are almost done processing and responding to the memoranda. It's worth noting that 95% of the issues relate to Eskom. We have been in constant communication with the Soweto leadership, and working on an appropriate way to give them feedback," Seabe said.

Seabe said Phalatse had engaged National Treasury and Eskom concerning a debt rehabilitation programme for Soweto. The township currently owes Eskom around R4 billion.

According to the City, moving the township to the supply of City power was "complicated" and "technical."

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"The Joburg Multi-Party Government has taken a long-term view. You will recall the Executive Mayor convened a two-day, first-of-it- kind Joburg Energy Indaba to explore a road map that will take the City away from depending on Eskom. The City is looking to procure an additional 500MW from IPPS over the next 18 to 36-months. This will allow the City to offset loadshedding," Seabe said.

Last year, the City signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Eskom stamping an agreement that Soweto would be moved to the power supply of the City. The ANC in the region had accused the Multi Party Government of dragging their feet with the process.

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