For everything related to the latest news in South Africa, be sure to check out our wrap of all major headlines on Monday 3 February.
It’s been a weekend of “50 shades of darkness and frustration” as Eskom subjected the nation to power outages which did not adhere to the power utility’s Stage 2 load shedding schedules. The only light in the darkness was provided by sports teams with the Stormers and Sharks winning their Super Rugby matches and Sundowns topping their Caf Champions League.
Today’s latest news in South Africa, Monday 3 February:
Eskom: Struggle to keep the lights on and tariff increases
On top of implementing yet another bout of load shedding since Thursday 30 January, Eskom muddled up the load shedding schedules on Saturday. Some areas in Gauteng, such as Mogale City, also had to deal with up to 27 hours without power in just three days.
On Sunday, Eskom said it has restored supply to most of the areas in Paulshof, Gauteng, which was subject to unplanned outages. It added that the technical team was busy working on the last minisub on Woodfern Street which was severely delayed due to “unforeseen circumstances”.
On Monday, the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) shadow minister of mineral resources and energy Kevin Mileham MP and DA shadow minister of public enterprises Ghaleb Cachalia MP will be presenting arguments against Eskom’s application for tariff hikes at the Cape Town leg of the National Energy Regulator of South Africa’s (Nersa) hearings.
Eskom is currently in the process of challenging the electricity tariff increases previously approved by Nersa for 2019 to 2022. It wants consumers to initially pay 10% to15% more for electricity, followed by tariff increases of 50% over the next few years.
This, despite the fact that South Africans experienced more than 418 hours of load-shedding in 2019 alone.
Coronavirus: DA calls for urgent national debate
Amid the spread of the deadly coronavirus like wildfire, DA shadow minister of health Siviwe Gwarube called on Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize to address Parliament and the nation on the Health Department’s readiness to deal with the global pandemic.
According to the DA, the tabling of an inter-ministerial strategy between the health and international relations and cooperation (DIRCO) departments is of crucial importance, especially considering that a case of the coronavirus has been confirmed in one of our neighbours, Botswana.
The DA believes stricter measures need to be put in place at all ports of entry, especially because the coronavirus can be fatal to any individual with a weakened immune system.
“And given our high HIV/Aids and TB infection rate, this virus has the potential to destroy the lives of hundreds of thousands of South Africans,” Garube added.
However, it will be Chinese ambassador Lin Songtian who is set to host a media briefing on Monday in Hatfield, Pretoria, to update the South African public on the latest situation and how China has responded in its fight against the virus.
Oversight visit of controversial Giyani Bulk Water project
Parliament’s portfolio committee on human settlements, water and sanitation will embark on a week-long oversight visit to Limpopo and Gauteng to assess progress on the implementation of the funded projects in the two provinces.
The committee will first visit the Giyani Bulk Water project which has been entangled in an albatross of allegations of corruption. Despite the large amounts of money that have been allocated to the project, the project which was started in 2016 is still far from completion. (Source: ANA)
John Steenhuisen’s Real State of the Nation Tour
DA leader John Steenhuisen takes the party’s Real State of the Nation Tour to Bloemfontein to continue engaging and interacting with South Africans in a quest to assess the real state of the South African nation.
Steenhuisen addressed DA members in Uitenhage and Port Elizabeth on Saturday about the current state of the party in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro.
According to him, it is still unclear whether there will be a coalition between the DA and the United Democratic Movement (UDM) despite talks between the two parties over the past few weeks after the UDM’s embattled Mongamela Bongani was ousted as mayor in December 2019.
Tshwane council wars: Stevens Mokgalapa to resign
In what he labels a “tough decision”, the DA’s Stevens Mokgalapa has made his intention to resign as Tshwane mayor public on Sunday.
According to him, his “presence in office is a football that others with political malice cannot resist kicking around” and he will be stepping down by the end of February for the greater good of the people of Tshwane.
The DA noted Mokgalapa’s intention to resign from his position and said it will now initiate processes to nominate a new mayor for Tshwane.
And with the ANC and EFF waiting in the wings, this could only make for some riveting news in the months to come…
Super Rugby action kicks off
On Friday, the Sharks beat the Bulls 23-15 in a scrappy Super Rugby derby at Kings Park, in Durban, winning with a try in the final minute.
Rugby World Cup-winning Springbok Herschel Jantjies scored a try and created two others as the Western Stormers crushed the Wellington Hurricanes 27-0 on Saturday in their first-round Super Rugby match at Newlands, in Cape Town.
The Crusaders launched their Super Rugby title defence with a 43-25 victory over the Waratahs in an entertaining nine-try festival in Nelson on Saturday.
Sundowns secure top spot
Mamelodi Sundowns beat arch-rivals Wydad Casabalanca 1-0 on Saturday to ensure they will top Group C of the Caf Champions League.
On the stroke of half-time, Wydad committed a vital error, bringing down Lebohang Maboe in the box, leaving the referee no alternative but to point to the spot. Ricardo Nascimento stepped up and beat Tagnaouti to give Sundowns that extra cushion.
Sundowns kept up a relentless assault on the Wydad area, besieging the defence of the visitors who held on but were unable to mount significant attacks in the first half-an-hour of the second period.
Proteas back in ODI mode
The Proteas are all amped to get back into One-Day International (ODI) cricket for the first time since the Cricket World Cup when they face World Champions England at Newlands on Tuesday 4 February.
England have never beaten South Africa in an ODI at Newlands, losing all five of their meetings against the Proteas at the ground. But , we can only hold thumbs as the Proteas have not exactly been in top form of late, having conceded a 3-1 Test series loss against England in January.
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