Ramaphosa backs down from Eskom 2.0 idea

The President was speaking during an oversight visit to the Tutuka Power Station in Mpumalanga on Saturday.

FILE:  President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: @PresidencyZA/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa has backed down on his sentiments that a second state-owned power station to rival embattled Eskom is a good idea.

This comes after he and Energy and Mineral Resources - Minister Gwede Mantashe made public comments about the need for a second power utility to take the pressure off Eskom.

Ramaphosa planted the idea when he addressed delegates at the SACP Congress on Thursday. Mantashe affirmed the proposition of what has now been dubbed Eskom 2.0.

As South Africans continue to express varied views on the potential establishment of a second power utility, the president appears to have decided on a more cautious approach to the subject.

While he maintains Eskom’s monopoly of the energy sector is a risk, he has now said Eskom takes first priority.

The President was speaking during an oversight visit to the Tutuka Power Station in Mpumalanga on Saturday.

"What we now need to do is to reposition Eskom and make sure that we generate enough energy for the country."

Frustrated South Africans have faced uninterrupted power cuts that first became a reality almost 15 years ago for weeks this winter.

Ramaphosa also assured the nation that the government is looking at ways to tackle load shedding.