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Consumers will suffer whether or not Eskom gets tariff hike - expert

Energy expert Lungile Mashele said that Eskom needed all the money it could get.

Picture: @NERSA_ZA/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - An energy expert has warned consumers will suffer, whether or not Eskom gets approval for another electricity tariff increase.

The power utility and the energy regulator are in court after Nersa deducted a R69 billion government bailout amount from Eskom's approved revenue for the current tariff period.

This will result in less revenue for the parastatal which will have a knock-on effect on consumers.

Lungile Mashele said that Eskom needed all the money it could get.

For this reason, the power utility has gone to the courts to force Nersa to approve further tariff increases for the next three years.

Eskom argued that the problem was that the energy regulator had classified a R69 billion government bailout as revenue which negatively affected their revenue.

"The consumer does not win. If they come back in favour of Nersa, it basically means that they were not going to grant increases, it means that Eskom will not be able to carry out its operations and maintenance as states."

Mashele said that Eskom was weighing down the economy and that it could lead to job cuts while at the same time leave South Africans with less in their pockets.