SOEs in need of urgent intervention

Loadshedding causes havoc in the economy and is a painful crisis to bear for small businesses, the writer says.
Loadshedding causes havoc in the economy and is a painful crisis to bear for small businesses, the writer says.
Image: Eskom

The crisis has begun: costly loadshedding and delayed passenger rail service. Not to mention that the vacuous leadership in both Eskom and Prasa has reached a turning point.

These entities are on the verge of collapse. One wonders what exactly is the role of the "war room" in making them work. Loadshedding causes havoc in the economy and is a painful crisis to bear for small businesses. Seemingly, power cuts would be a way of life to render the "new dawn" a stillborn project.

When Eskom plunged the country into stage six loadshedding, minister of public enterprises Pravin Gordhan gave the nation a woeful assurance that everything is under control amid the ambiguous utterances by management.

Then, amazingly, President Cyril Ramaphosa cut short his trip to woo investors in Egypt only to be given a lame excuse of "an act of sabotage."

Methinks it's a red herring to give the new incumbent a free hand to unbundle Eskom and sell off assets to the usual suspects. Neither would the bailout keep Eskom in operation on a solvent basis.

Everything must change. Ramaphosa needs to reshuffle cabinet and bring on board people who are fit for purpose such as the African People's Convention's Themba Godi to lead the ministry of public enterprises. State-owned enterprises need non-interference leadership from government and sound corporate governance to ensure a definite change of course.

Otherwise, SA risks further downgrades like the deaf-blind leadership downplayed the present-day crisis.

Morgan Phaahla, Vosloorus

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