Soweto “’ R2
billion lost
 
Johannesburg, South Africa — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 27 October 2010 – Eskom has come out strongly in defence of its decision to write off R2 billion lost through theft of copper, damage to the infrastructure and debt in Soweto.

Eskom chairman Mpho Makwana told a media conference here that the issue had been over-exaggerated.

“You are making too much of the Soweto issue,” he said. “If you open up our annual report, there is a public number “’ in the previous financial year we have written off roughly R2 billion in bad debts and infrastructure problems,” he explained.

At the same time Gauteng premier Nomvula Mokonyane said the state and communities needed to move towards renewable energy resources.

“Part of the work that we are doing is to see how best we can work together in growing the economy, with us taking advantage of our different responsibilities “’ one supplying electricity and the other using the supply of electricity to grow our economy and improve the quality of our people in Gauteng and in the country,” she said.

“We have agreed to a task team that will look at all aspects that have been raised “’ cable theft, electricity theft, non-payment, bad debts in the province as a whole “’ and come up with a comprehensive strategy of how to resolve that in the province,” said Makwana.

Gauteng will be the first province to undergo such a partnership between the provincial authorities and the parastatal.