Eskom CEO rubbishes claims that Ingula plant over budget

According to 'Carte Blanche', costs at the power plant spiralled from about R8 billion to over R30 billion.

Eskom CEO Brian Molefe.  Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Eskom CEO Brian Molefe has rubbished a report suggesting its new Ingula Power Station is more than R27 billion over budget.

Earlier this week, Carte Blanche revealed the plant allegedly saw costs spiral from about R8 billion to over R30 billion.

The investigative TV programme also said Eskom pushed the completion date for Ingula by at least four years and bypassed safety regulations, in order to get unit three up and running.

But Molefe says this report is baseless.

"It's unfortunate that Carte Blanche chose to publish a hopelessly inaccurate story on a matter that could have the side from Eskom and they didn't."

Earlier, the utility's Khulu Phasiwe told Eyewitness News there were a number of unforeseen circumstances which resulted in the costs rising and said lessons had been learnt.

"So far we are doing everything possible to exceed the current amount that have been flaunted about. All we know at this stage is that the audited figures for the project cost Eskom just over R26.8 billon."

Ingula is expected to be fully operational by mid-2017.

Carte Blanche says it stands by its report.