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South Africa: Eskom’s Age of Chaos and Uncertainty Shows No Sign of End in Sight

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While the government and the ANC have promised to fix South Africa’s electricity crisis, there is much evidence that President Cyril Ramaphosa is not in control of the situation.

The fact that President Cyril Ramaphosa has yet to formally and legally empower the electricity minister, Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, suggests he has lost the ability to deal with political disputes. Meanwhile, Eskom has to appoint a new CEO, and this appointment itself is likely to lead to more divisions.

After all this time, our political “leaders” do not appear to be focused on working together to resolve rolling blackouts.

This week marks two months since Ramokgopa was appointed as minister of electricity in the Presidency. At the time of his appointment, Ramaphosa said it was necessary to have an official concentrating solely on dealing with load shedding.

Despite that, two months later, Ramokgopa still has no formal powers.

On Thursday, Ramaphosa again told Parliament that he would give Ramokgopa powers “soon”. Again, he did not specify a date.

Ramokgopa himself was asked about this in Parliament on Wednesday, and reacted angrily to the claim that he was a “junior minister”.

This is unprecedented. If a minister has no formal powers from the President, then what role are they playing? What are they actually doing? Is there any reason to pay a salary to a minister who has no legal power…

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