Johannesburg - African People’s Convention (APC) leader Themba Godi has appealed to President Cyril Ramaphosa to prioritise South Africa’s electricity crisis in his State of the Nation Address (Sona) this week.
Ramaphosa was expected to deliver the State of the Nation Address as the country has been plunged into a power crisis with unacceptable levels of load shedding that have crippled the economy.
The APC has been running campaigns in different communities, aiding people struggling to get electricity. The party has also staged protests across the country over reports of Eskom being privatised and the withdrawal of coal in favour of renewables.
“To end electricity blackouts, the president should announce the kicking out, with immediate effect, of Pravin Gordhan, Andre de Ruyter, Jan Oberholtzer, etc from Eskom affairs,” Godi said.
“The president should boldly reconfirm coal as the current bedrock of our energy generation; announce measures to fully restore coal-fired power stations to stabilise electricity supply; and announce a halt on IPP licensing till we can fully clarify their cost effectiveness.
“Such measures would calm the nation and give hope that economic development is possible.”
Godi said the APC would expect the president to announce practical measures to create jobs by committing to at least bolster the Reserve Bank’s mandate to include economic development and reverse the privatisation of state-owned entities such as Prasa, Transnet, Eskom, Durban Harbour, SAA, etc.
“The APC would like to see a more concerted focus on co-operatives' funding and support as a means to liberate the productive forces, thus creating wealth and income in the townships and rural areas,” he said.
Godi said Ramaphosa had the responsibility of showing that his next five years of leadership will not be the same as the past five years of his governance, which had been riddled with many problems.
“But judging by the pronouncements from the recently concluded ANC lekgotla, it looks like the country is in for the same spin as the last 5 years, which has had no practical or material meaning for the poor working class. His legacy is sealed. Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold,” he said.
The APC was expected to contest elections next year. The party had yet to announce its leadership candidates.