Broken promises? Angry Joburg residents demand answers after load-shedding blackouts
Fuming residents complain on Twitter after power cuts in line with the load-shedding schedule
City of Johannesburg residents were left fuming after experiencing power cuts during the weekend, despite the municipality announcing there would be no load-shedding.
Power utility Eskom implemented load-shedding on Friday due to multiple breakdowns and trips at power stations. The initial announcement said the blackouts would continue until Monday.
City of Joburg spokesperson Isaac Mangena promised on Saturday that city power customers would not experience load-shedding as the city had signed an extension of a power purchase agreement with Kelvin power station that gives them an extra 220MW.
“We believe with this extra capacity we will be able to cushion residents of the city from the inconvenience of load-shedding stages 1 and 2. Those experiencing localised outages should log a call with us so technicians can attend to the problems,” said Mangena.
However, this did not materialise. Fuming residents complained on Twitter after experiencing power cuts in line with the load-shedding schedule.
SowetanLIVE reported on Sunday that city mayor Mpho Moerane was furious with Eskom as the city had taken all possible steps to prevent power outages. He accused the power utility of heavy-handedness and vowed to take Eskom to court.
He said the city produced proof of additional supply capacity but Eskom had not responded by the time it implemented load-shedding.
“The city is prepared to go the legal route to halt Eskom’s blanket heavy-handedness against the people of Johannesburg, especially those whose Eskom accounts are up to date,” said Moerane.
On Sunday Eskom said it will suspend load-shedding on Monday morning but resume at 9pm until 5am the next morning on Monday and Tuesday nights.
Here are some responses from residents:
My localized outage started at 12 and just ended. As per the load shedding schedule for block 16. You guys are miracle workers that your random outages time perfectly with the load shedding schedule. You all should be magicians🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣— Cheryl (@Joziqueen66) October 24, 2021
I was load shed according to the schedule this morning. I said it before. It looks like it doesn't matter what you say if Eskom decides to cut power or not— Woogster. (@SugieGP) October 24, 2021
But I literally was loadshed according to schedule at 12 :(— Pippa Tshabalala (@UnexpectedPippa) October 24, 2021
We're currently experiencing load shedding for the second time today at Noordwyk block (3) and it's also on the schedule 18:00 - 20:30— Palesa Moleko (@palesa_moleko) October 24, 2021
Then please explain why areas are going out EXACTLY at load shedding times?— Fabian Franco-Roldan (@FabianFrancoRo2) October 24, 2021