PLUNGING the World Cup into darkness must never be allowed to happen. This is the threat by unions if electricity supplier Eskom does not meet their demands by Wednesday.
No need to even interrogate - at this stage of course - the merits or demerits of what the National Union of Metalworkers of SA, National Union of Mineworkers and Solidarity are demanding.
We concede that like other parastatals, Eishkom is populated by fatcats who masquerade as concerned bosses. Their plan for million-dollar bonuses in this recession is a typical example.
Thus we have a tinge of sympathy for workers who are at the other end of the financial scale.
But this is not the time to hit the country with a blackout.
Every South African agrees that the 2010 Fifa World Cup is:
l the biggest thing to happen to the country after the release of political prisoners;
l as momentous as the day Nelson Mandela was sworn in as president of the country;
l the most globally popular event not only to hit the country but the continent, and may never happen again in a 100 years;
l an occasion that has won the country more tourists and friends than at any other time in its history; and
l bringing us together as a nation like no other occurance.
All these achievements will be erased in a second if electricity was to be cut. The world will remember us as the country that blacked out the biggest sporting event in modern history.
For the sake of the World Cup and our country, we beg you comrade and Eskom: please hold fire.