Eskom hopes to avoid powerless weekend

Eskom will this afternoon announce whether SA can expect a load shedding free weekend.

FILE. Eskom's Koeberg Power Station. Picture: Eskom.

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom says while it plans to do maintenance on the grid this festive season, it hopes to avoid major load shedding starting with this weekend.

The power utility says it will be in a position this afternoon to announce whether South Africans can expect a load shedding free period over the next couple of days.

On Thursday, government announced a turnaround strategy for Eskom, as the nation battles the worst power crisis since 2008.

Eskom's Andrew Etzinger says the holidays should bring relief.

"We'll begin a lot of maintenance on the grid so there will still be a certain amount of pressure. But we will manage that and we're hoping to give the country a good breather."

But the question remains, how will Eskom keep the lights on next year?

It's has been instructed to release a detailed financial report to Cabinet this month, to show how it will cope next year in keeping the country's lights on.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe announced a five-point plan on Thursday, to help the utility with the ongoing electricity crisis, saying a technical war room has been established to implement the plan.

This week, Eskom CEO Tshediso Matona also urged South Africans to start planning their lives and businesses around load shedding because it's the reality for the foreseeable future.