Embattled, Dysfunctional, Bankrupt, Incompetent, and Corrupt. Eskom – Our week in review.

Embattled, Dysfunctional, Bankrupt, Incompetent, and Corrupt… Eskom – Our week in review…

Eskom, are you throwing what is left of South Africa out to pasture? Our past week in Pietermaritzburg North looks like this:

Monday, Loadshedding 12-2 pm

Tuesday, Loadshedding 2-4 pm

Wednesday, Loadshedding 4-6 pm

Thursday, Loadshedding 6-8 am

Friday, Loadshedding 8-10 am

Satursday, Loadshedding 10 am-12pm

Sunday, Loadshedding 6-8 pm

(Plus 5 – 10 or so minutes extra each time)

An average month means that you are stealing 60 hours pm from the already burdened consumer; the very consumer you are now threatening to implement harsh steps against in a bid to recover your vast unpaid (and increasing) debt, which is just short of 2 Billion – in Pietermaritzburg alone.

Just as an aside, how much did the rusty iron figurines that now deface the once glamorous PietermaritzburgCity Hall surrounds cost the MsunduziMunicipality? Did the consumers actually have a say in that? Do the consumers even know what those rusty bits of metal symbolise – or what they are meant to symbolise? Were they meant to rust after less than a year and a half? I digress.

This equates back to almost a week of services that we do not have – but which we are forced to pay for.

I say ‘steal” because the consumer is being held to ransom – they have no other choice but to be kept in the dark.

Therefore, since Eskom is saving however much coal dust it is saving, after having sold off South Africa’s vast supply of quality coal and resources to the rest of Africa for cheaper rates than it supplies its citizens, they should, it stands to reason, be crediting every single consumer account with at least 25% on their monthly services’ bill. After all there is no service for a minimum of 60 hours per month – no work no pay! Isn’t that SA Government’s rules? Or is it selective?

What happened to “Eskom : ‘Consumers can relax, there will be no loadshedding on a Sunday.’”? Did you forget?

And why is it that I have a loadshedding schedule setting out loadshedding x 2 most days (not on Sunday, of course) issued by Eskom and published in the local media, but it has never once been adhered to?

Here is life:

  • Start work midday if you are lucky – it takes guesswork, because you are never quite sure when your power will go out. Clean house first, educate your children, try and work for ten minutes in the hope that something will be accomplished?
  • Make sure that your computer and other electronic devices are shut down properly and rebooted every 15 minutes so as not to lose valuable data in the event of unscheduled ‘scheduled’ loadshedding – Lord above forbid that you actually lose an entire hard drive, or other valuable. electronic equipment, due to power surges because your insurance company will probably not cover it, Eskom sure won’t cover it, Msunduzi Municipality will not cover it – oh dear, looks like you will have to save up for a new computer – hard to do, because you cannot actually run your business, do your job, clean your house, educate your children, earn a measly living – because you are being deprived of your basic human right, as enshrined in our wonderful Constitution, to government provided services, which includes electricity and power. This is, of course, notwithstanding the fact that you are being charged for it – and in our case, for the past year OVERCHARGED by up to 60% of our monthly account.
  • Run up electricity costs and pre-cook lots of food. You are already being charged by a minimum of 25% more than you utilise, so utilise more while you have the chance. You will be charged “interest on arrears” which don’t really exist, but you will never be paid credit interest. This all pales into insignificance when compared to the necessity of loadshedding for the man in the street. Car, housing allowances, and the like, together with 6 figure salaries – oh, and loadshedding – are actually more important than the regular people (who are referred to as consumers, not ‘part-time consumers’, or ‘overcharged consumers’, but ‘consumers’) who work so hard to provide it for those who hold these government service providing positions.
  • Keep masses of said pre-cooked food in the refrigerator. It will not freeze or even be kept cold because loadshedding has a habit of defrosting the fridge and freezer.
  • Be prepared for nasty smells emanating from the kitchen area as food, which you worked your botty off to buy has now gone off. It does not matter that you don’t have extra cash to replace it because loadshedding is more important than feeding your family.
  • When your city is hit by a devastating hailstorm that blows the roof off, crashes through tiles and sheeting, and rips the gutters and fascias from your house, understand that loadshedding takes priority. Your home can wait to be cleaned up – it requires electricity to chop down half-fallen trees, suck up thousands of litres of water from the inside of your home, water soaked carpets, and generally try and clean and disinfect the area of quickly rotting debris in 36-39 Degree C heat!

Thank you, Eskom. Thank you, Government of South Africa. You have done and are doing a fine job in ensuring that South Africa remains one of the least popular, unsafe, uneducated, corrupt, and embattled countries in the world.

I am sure my many family members from abroad can’t wait to visit. I am sure my beautiful children whom I have not seen for years, but who wisely left this country really want to return some day – perhaps to see what it really is like living in deepest darkest Africa.

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