First Strike by Eskom`s Privatization Squad : sell off the power stations
“which is the biggest mistake they could make”
Interview with Adil Nchabeleng of Transform RSA
” Half the people sitting on that particular task team have an interest in buying Eskom`s power stations”
What does it mean to privatize of the sale of electricity? It means turning electricity into a commodity, no longer a basic human right and the engine that powers industrial, economic development but a profit orientated commodity likely in foreign hands.
How true is the narrative portrayed to the public by the media of the current state of affairs with Eskom? Who is actually to blame for the power outages, a cartel of contractors or Eskom?
“Eskom currently already serves the purpose of being a utility for the people. That is why it is called Eskom. It is a public entity which is owned by South Africans under the stewardship and guardianship of the government. The State does not own Eskom, Eskom is owned by the people of South Africa. So in that context the minute you take away its competitiveness of Eskom as a public utility to actually produce, distribute as well as ensure that it can transmit electricity at the cheapest cost without being forced to be highly profitable ; because whatever profits it makes it reinvests them into operations as well as maintenance and ensuring that Eskom becomes a growing utility provider. You take away that function, you privatize it, simply means you are now going to have a private company and investors that are going to demand a dividend on an annual basis for whatever money they put into Eskom.”
“So when you privatize electricity you make sure that consumers get to pay more unnecessarily , right now whatever profits are made are reinvested so the costs are continuously kept low. You cannot privatize a natural monopoly like electricity generation . It is something that most countries regard as their key strategic sector that the State looks after and provides electricity to the people so that the economy can grow and produce electricity for cheap. The minute you make it into a commodity, like they are planning on doing, you then create the confusion of market related interests and profiteering interests whereby as much as I can charge my consumer, the more money I can make so as a privateer I can make the best money out of it. So capital becomes now the critical component rather than the people. So that is why we are opposed to that move.”