Home News Election Ramaphosa gives Kgosientsho Ramokgopa long-awaited powers to deal with loadshedding

Ramaphosa gives Kgosientsho Ramokgopa long-awaited powers to deal with loadshedding

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has finally given Minister of Electricity Kgosientsho Ramokgopa his new powers following speculation and reports about turf wars between three ministers in the energy portfolio.

South Africa Mpumalanga Kusile visit 22 May 2023. Minister of Electricity Kgosientsho Ramokgopa visits the Kusile power plant in Mpumalanga as part of his inspection of the Eskom fleet, to see the progress on the construction of temporary chimneys to get the facility to full capacity. These temporary measures will be in place for 18 months at a cost of over R250 million as the permanent feature is being built. Picture: Timothy Bernard African News Agency (ANA)

PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has finally given Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa powers to deal with the energy crisis in the country.

Ramaphosa transferred some of the powers held by Minerals and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe to Ramokgopa.

A few weeks ago Ramaphosa and his Cabinet ministers denied that there were turf wars in the energy portfolio between Mantashe, Ramokgopa and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

The President told parliament recently when he was answering oral questions that he was going to gazette the powers of the Electricity Minister.

Ramokgopa has been in the position for three months but the issue of his powers had remained unresolved.

The presidency announced on Friday that Ramaphosa has given Ramokgopa his authority as minister of electricity.

Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Vincent Magwenya said the authority given to Ramokgopa lay with Mantashe before.

“The President has also transferred to the Minister of Electricity relevant powers and functions set out in Section 34(2) of the Electricity Regulation Act.

Section 34 of the Act deals with new generation capacity and provides as follows: ‘(1) The Minister may, in consultation with the Regulator –

(a) determine that new generation capacity is needed to ensure the continued uninterrupted supply of electricity;

(b) determine the types of energy sources from which electricity must be generated, and the percentages of electricity that must be generated from such sources;

(c) determine that electricity thus produced may only be sold to the persons or in the manner set out in such notice;

(d) determine that electricity thus produced must be purchased by the persons set out in such notice;

(e) require that new generation capacity must –

(i) be established through a tendering procedure which is fair, equitable, transparent, competitive and cost-effective;

(ii) provide for private sector participation.’

“This proclamation will provide the Minister of Electricity with the powers necessary to direct the procurement of new generation capacity and ensure security of supply,” said Magwenya.

These are the powers needed by Ramokgopa to deal with loadshedding.

He will also work closely with the National Energy Crisis Committee.

Ramokgopa will oversee the implementation of the energy action plan that was presented by Ramaphosa last year.

Ramokgopa has said in the past that Eskom was expected to get more megawatts by the end of the year when three units at Kusile are brought back online.

He has also said Mantashe was overseeing the launch of the new bid windows to get more renewable energy on the grid.

The government was planning to launch the rolling window of 15,000MW of renewable energy.

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