Eskom: Municipalities owe us R35bn and we want that money

The power utility presented the state of its systems at Megawatt Park on Monday.

FILE: Eskom CEO André de Ruyter. Picture: Eyewitness News.

JOHANNESBURG – Eskom said municipalities owed it R35.2 billion and it wanted its money.

The power utility presented the state of its systems at Megawatt Park on Monday.

CEO Andre de Ruyter said illegal connections also threaten to cause explosions and fires due to overloading.

“As of 31 January this year, municipalities owed Eskom an amount of R35.2 billion, which is an unsustainable situation.”

READ: No choice but to continue with power cuts, says Eskom

Eskom said it was in continuous talks with government to recover money owed by municipalities and the power utility had met with various stakeholders under the guidance of Deputy President David Mabuza.

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De Ruyter said a partnership model was in the making: “And will involve Eskom assisting those municipalities to operate their distribution networks, install prepaid meters, assist in revenue collection and carry out much-needed maintenance in those municipal distribution networks.”

He said Eskom had to implement load reduction during peak hours in areas that had a high number of illegal connections to protect infrastructure, otherwise, transformers would be overloaded and explode or catch fire and then they would have to be replaced.

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