Loadshedding has proved time and again to be a great inconvenience to the public, businesses, especially restaurants have been hard hit, but this time around some are better prepared.
With or without loadshedding, a PE restaurant continues as usual as a generator saves the day.
Lara van der Walt, a customer at the restaurant, says that although it is good that the restaurant has a creative alternative, the menu is different.
“I think it’s wonderful when restaurants are creative and use alternative energy, but of course in terms of our choice the menu if different, not everything is available and it makes life a bit uncomfortable.”
Another customer, Khanya Nonkwebo, says that he can sit at the restaurant and use their power.
“It’s pretty inconvenient during the weekend when you don’t have school or anything. So you want to chill be at home, but there is no power; so if you want to be on your phone – it’s flat, no TV, no microwave and you have to go somewhere. Fortunately for PE restaurants, they have generators so I can chill here and use the power.”
Loadshedding has moved to stage 4. Eskom blames a loss of additional imports from Mozambique.
A restaurant manager, Michelle-Ann Bailey, says restaurants require a lot of power; and big generators are expensive.
“So obviously we have a generator in place, but restaurants require a large amount of electricity, so generators that size are costly. We are investigating upping our generator, but for now we can only run on a limited menu – so 80% of our breakfast menu and 60% of our lunch menu. However, we ensure to continue serving coffee cause that’s our thing.”
Although restaurants make alternative plans, they’re suffering as they cannot function fully and sourcing alternative energy is costly.
Gordhan meets with Eskom executives
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan is currently meeting with Eskom executives to try and resolve the crisis brought on by Cyclone Idai that has cut off power imports from Mozambique.
Eskom Acting Head of Generation, Andrew Etzinger says “At the moment we are implementing stage 3 loadshedding; but we will need to move to stage 4 unfortunately from 12 o clock midday and this is as a result of the loss imports from supplies station in Mozambique. We understand the cyclone which is moving over the country has taken down the transition months between the power station and Eskom which unfortunately meant the loss over 1000 megawatts of capacity.”
Traffic misery in parts of the City of Gold
Johannesburg business owners say their narrow profits are being severely impacted by Eskom’s stage four load shedding which has gripped the entire country.
The power outages have also caused traffic misery in some parts of the City of Gold – with traffic lights out.
Residents are having to find power alternatives amid the severe load shedding. Business owners say they loose thousands of rand during the outages.
“It’s affecting us in every way because all the ATMs are all off also and the customers can’t draw money and can’t come into the store to buy or we lose the whole day sales, people don’t come in at all. I have to find alternatives to boil my water with something else. My meat, your frozen everything you buy limited one so loadshedding is affecting me a lot and is costly too much.
Political parties condemn SA’s constant loadshedding
The DA says South Africa currently finds itself in a crisis as stage four loadshedding is being implemented, showing that the ANC has no clue in how to deal with the power utility.
DA Federal Executive Chairperson James Selfe says it doesn’t make sense how Eskom would be forced intensify loadshedding on a weekend, when demand is low.
COPE says this is crippling the struggling economy. COPE spokesperson, Dennis Bloom says: “Everyday the country is loosing billions of rands. It is very clear that the ANC government has run out of plans to address this load-shedding. This is an economic sabotage at the highest level.”
Energy analyst Laura Caetano says South Africans will continue to face heavy loadshedding by cash strapped Eskom until government deals with the country’s increasing energy demands.
She says the importation of electricity from neighbouring countries like Mozambique compromises South Africa’s energy security.
Cyclone Idai has caused major damage in northern Mozambique and has halted power exports to South Africa from Mozambique’s Cahora Bassa hydroelectric plant. The parastatal lost 1300 Megawatts and announced a stage four load shedding. Caetano says South Africa needs to be self sufficient when it comes to power.
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