“We feel relieved” – Parliament welcomes army deployment at Eskom

Emissions rise from cooling towers at Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. Tutuka coal-fired power plant in Mpumalanga.

The deployment of the South African National Defense Force (SANDF) to four Eskom power plants was welcomed by Parliament’s Natural Resources and Energy Portfolio Committee Chairwoman Sahlulele Luzipo.

News24 reported late Saturday that at least 10 soldiers would be deployed at each of the following power plants: Majuba, Camden, Grootvlei and Tutuka.

The move came “in response to the growing threat of sabotage, theft, vandalism and corruption” at coal and diesel power plants, said presidency spokesman Vincent Magwenya.

Luzipo said this was “right on the heels” of a successful raid of an illegal coal storage facility by multidisciplinary law enforcement agencies in Emalahleni in Mpumalanga on Thursday.

More than 16 people were arrested in the raid, and trucks and documents were seized, according to eNCA.

Luzipo said: “The committee has always held the strong belief that the country’s electricity crisis is caused by Eskom’s inability to deal with the maintenance of aging power plants and internal sabotage, as opposed to a political failure. We now feel relieved.”

He added that talks about stabilizing the country’s electricity supply should be about “developing technological mechanisms” to detect early signs of crime and sabotage, “considering that deploying the army alone is not a sustainable solution.” is”.

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