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Eskom to intensify power interruptions

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While it is legally allowed to disconnect the bulk supply to the municipality in total, the utility is weary of the fact that it may cause undue hardship to consumers and members of the community

File image: IOL.

RESIDENTS of Barkly West, Delportshoop and Longlands will experience “intensified electricity interruptions” from next week if a payment agreement is not reached between the Dikgatlong Municipality and Eskom by Monday.

On Tuesday, Eskom commenced with bulk supply interruptions throughout the Dikgatlong Municipality, leaving residents without electricity from 6am to 8am and 5pm to 7.30pm on weekdays and 8.30am to 11am and 3pm to 5.30pm on weekends.

The municipality is currently indebted to Eskom in the amount of R61 517 753 for the bulk supply of electricity, part of which has been outstanding and in escalation since August 2013.

Eskom has said that while it is legally allowed to disconnect the bulk supply to the municipality in total, the utility is weary of the fact that it may cause undue hardship to consumers and members of the community, and has opted for a “regulated interruption of electricity supply” as opposed to an outright disconnection.

However, Eskom said yesterday that a payment agreement had not been reached and if this was not done by Monday, it would commence with “intensified interruptions” on Tuesday, which will include power cuts from 6am to 9am and 5pm to 8.30pm on weekdays and from 8.30am to noon and 3pm to 7pm on weekends.

According to Eskom’s supply interruption schedule, the municipality will see even more intensified interruptions from June 12 if a payment agreement is not reached by June 11.

This will include daily interruptions between 6am and 8pm.

While several Barkley West businesses stated that the current interruptions did “not really affect them” as it was scheduled outside trading hours, the situation would become “extremely difficult” and cause a massive loss of income if the 6am to 8pm schedule was implemented.