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Industry experts slam Eskom

Experts says the power utility is sugar coating the country's power situation for the year ahead.

FILE: Power lines are pictured in Johannesburg. AFP.

CAPE TOWN - Industry experts have slammed Eskom for what they say is the parastatal's 'sugar coating' of the country's power situation for the year ahead.

As the holiday season draws to an end and businesses reopen, demand for electricity is expected to increase once again.

Eskom's Andrew Etzinger says the power utility used the holiday period to run tests and conduct maintenance.

"At the moment we have about 27,000 megawatts available but the reason for that comes to part two, is that we are doing a lot of maintenance which will in large part be drawing to and end over the next few days, in anticipation of Monday."

However, energy expert, Chris Yelland says Eskom's unplanned maintenance over the December period was very high.

"My deep concern is that the planned maintenance over this Christmas period was not very high, the unplanned maintenance was exceptionally high, double their aspiration. The aspiration was to have 10 percent unplanned outages, they had 20 percent."