Power utility Eskom has warned that the power system remains under constraint despite having recovered sufficiently to suspend all load shedding.
Eskom brought load shedding to a halt on Sunday evening following a tumultuous week for the energy giant where it lost at least 20 000MW of generation capacity – forcing it to implement the more stringent Stage 4 load shedding.
“The system will remain constrained on Monday and Tuesday and it is expected that extensive use of emergency reserves will be required ahead of the units returning. Eskom, therefore, requests the assistance of all South Africans to continue using electricity sparingly,” the power utility said.
Eskom said although load shedding has an impact on all sectors, it remains a necessary tool for the power supplier.
“We would like to thank the people of South Africa for their support and patience during the period of load shedding.
“Eskom takes its mandate of supplying electricity to South Africa seriously and is fully aware of the impact load shedding is having on the whole country. Unfortunately, at times, it becomes necessary to implement load shedding in order to protect the system and prevent a blackout,” the power supplier said.
Eskom said the suspension of load shedding was as a result of steady recovery in both generating capacity and emergency reserves.
“Since Friday, Eskom teams have returned four generation units to service. The emergency generation reserves have also sufficiently recovered. Eight other generating units are expected to return to service by Wednesday evening,” the power utility said.
Meanwhile, an Eskom employee has been arrested for allegedly stealing at least 40 pieces of structural cross members of a pylon at the power utility’s academy.
A pylon is used to support lines of electricity.
The employee was nabbed when he allegedly attempted to sell the cross members to a scrap metal dealer.
Eskom Gauteng’s Safety, Health, Environment, Risk, and Quality manager Kith Maitisa said the power utility denounces any criminal behaviour.
“It is quite disappointing to have one of our own working against the entire collective and its mandate to provide quality electricity to customers. We condemn such acts of criminality in the strongest terms as they not only affect Eskom, but also impact our customers with unnecessary supply interruptions which can be avoided.
“We will continue to heighten efforts to curb theft, vandalism of our infrastructure and any criminal acts by anyone, especially our employees who should be our guardians against such infrastructure destruction,” Maitisa said.