“It is unacceptable for an entire economy to be put at risk to protect Eskom’s monopoly on electricity generation. The only permanent solution is to repeal the legislation prohibiting private electricity generation and trading. This is why Sakeliga launched a campaign at www.pickmypower.co.za, where business owners may support the appeal to President Cyril Ramaphosa for a free market in electricity and where they may indicate the damage caused to their businesses by load shedding.”
So says Piet le Roux, chief executive of Sakeliga, an independent business community, following the latest application of load shedding by Eskom this week.
At the same time Sakeliga assists its members with interim relief measures by promoting access to affordable private generation of electricity. A platform where suppliers of alternative electricity generation devices such as solar panels may list their services and members of the public and businesses may look for suppliers, will be announced next week. The suppliers’ references will be checked and the public may complete a request form to get access to the platform.
Sakeliga is proud to announce that this year it is the main sponsor for the second time of KragDag, the biggest self-reliance expo in South Africa, with more than 350 exhibitors and 15 000 visitors.
“The wheels of the economy should keep turning – as Sakeliga we will support our members to ensure just that. Although small-scale private electricity generation is no panacea, it is not illegal, unlike large-scale private electricity generation. It is proven technology that is already being implemented throughout the country to bring relief during load shedding and to ease the pressure on the national power grid. This is why we are looking into ways to make it as affordable as possible for our members to implement private electricity generation for own use where applicable.”
Concerned business owners and members of the public may visit www.pickmypower.co.za to send a message to President Cyril Ramaphosa in which they support the call for a free electricity market. Business people may also use this web page to indicate the impact load shedding has on their business, for instance how many employees hours are lost and what their estimated losses amount to.
“The President should be confronted with the frustration experienced by businesses and consumers because of Eskom. If government is unable to guarantee reliable electricity provision, its refusal to allow the private sector to pick up the slack is becoming increasingly unreasonable and unfair,” Le Roux concludes.