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Welcome to the eThekwini Electricity web site.
A message from our Head: Sandile Maphumulo:
As the 2006/07 financial year was concluded, warnings of supply challenges had started to emerge with the problems experienced in the Western Cape. Reality hit home when we experienced our first power outages owing to generation shortfalls in September 2007, which introduced the nation to the meaning of the word "load shedding". Load shedding intensified in January 2008 with devastating effects to both business and the community at large, and caused endless headaches for electricity distributors like eThekwini Electricity.
This forced all relevant stakeholders to combine their collective wisdom to find a solution to this challenge, leading to the establishment of the National Emergency Response Team (NERT). There is a strong belief that the suspending of load shedding in the first week of May 2008, was due to engagements at NERT.
To add to this crisis, issues of scarce skills also affected us tremendously, with a number of skilled staff leaving and our inability to attract new staff. Every effort has been made to increase our ability to attract and retain staff which culminated in the payment of scarce skills allowances to those categories of staff that were found, through market research, to be possessing scarce skills. While this was happening, the Electricity Distribution Industry restructuring process continued with a number of staff from Electricity participating in different work groups. This continued participation was and still is important as challenges in the distribution industry need to be addressed and resolved. This will avoid further inconveniencing of customers with distribution problems especially after having just emerged from the generation capacity related challenges.
To fund its build programme, Eskom was given a second bite of the cherry when it was given a further 13.3 percent tariff increase by NERSA, which was only approved on 18 June, putting immense pressure on the municipalities to then factor the latest additional increase into their tariff structure increases. For the municipalities, this Eskom increase translated to 35.9% overall increase. Despite the many challenges faced by our Unit, we connected 14 865 customers to our grid, attended to 167 357 reticulation faults and increased the number of Free Basic Electricity beneficiaries from 7 709 to well over 60 000. Our peak demand for the 2007/08 financial year was recorded in February at 1 890 MW on our main 275kV network and our total energy consumption for the year was 11 163 GWh. Our turnover was just under 4 billion rand and we showed a surplus of 147 million rand which was set aside to fund future capital replacement projects.
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