By Neelam Rahim
A more sustainable and consistent electricity supply was top of the agenda for Soweto residents as they marched to the office of Johannesburg Mayor Mpho Phalatse. Residents disrupted the traffic from and into the township yesterday as the frustration about cuts in electricity supply erupted. Meanwhile, SANCO has highlighted problems with electricity supply and the province’s health and education sectors.
Radio Islam speaks to SANCO’s Gauteng coordinator, Mpho Sesedinyane.
Mpho says, “The reality is that the problem of outages in part of Soweto is the responsibility of Eskom. It is a liberating move by Eskom, and it is an abuse that score is enjoying that is continued to be inflating in the faces of our people. And it is for that reason that we, as a National Civic Association organization, feel very strongly that it’s time for the residents to take up arms. And we confirmed this nonsensical abusive relationship that we are receiving from Escort. It can’t be that up until today. You’ve got people without electricity. Three years without electricity. As we speak. Others are nine months without electricity whilst you are still engaging has come to replace the mini shops. They don’t return and switch our people off because they want to install prepaid meters without really engaging the community, and they switch the entire area. So we speak. Now, areas are off in Soweto, and it creates unnecessary unrest. But you can confirm that it is indeed an abuse of power. It is abuse by Eskom, and we can’t accept and allow that tendency to continue.”
“The matter is that Eskom will always fight the issues of finance, but from where we sit, we can confirm that it is a deliberate act of Eskom because there is a view that Eskom wants to sell this entity very cheaply, the same way they did with SAA. So it is their view. It is the concocted plan to continue to move with it because the explanation given to the residents is that the residents are not paying. The residents also have not been paying for electricity. And it is for that reason that they decide not to assist the resident in ensuring that they help them with this particular issue. But at the same time, you also have a holy city of Johannesburg leadership, a leadership of Johannesburg currently that does not care about its residents. It does not care about the poor black masses of our people communities on the ground,” says Mpho.
Mpho expresses concern over grand-scale corruption at the Department of Health in Gauteng, SANCO. Whistleblowers have submitted damning evidence of a crime, especially the Thembisa Hospital.
Mpho says, “There is grand corruption in the Thembisa Hospital. And we asked, what is the grand corruption? They indicated to us, look, we are sitting herewith contracts that are signed at home at the permanent residence of the CEO of the hospital. People are told to come and collect appointment letters at home with a view that there must be certain money that would be dispensed during that process of corruption. And when we even went deeper, you would see that the amount there are products that the hospital will procure, something worth $5,000, will be sold to an amount of 65,000 rent. Clearly hasty that is actually taking place in that hospital.”
For more on this, listen to Radio Islam’s podcast below.