Attention broadcasters: English audio clip from MPP Cayla Murray attached.
The Democratic Alliance in the Western Cape welcomes the letter by the Premier of the Western Cape, Alan Winde, to President Cyril Ramaphosa, calling on National Government to show greater transparency and work with provincial governments to address the ongoing electricity disaster.
I am calling on the President to respond to the Premier’s letter by Friday, 27 January 2023 as the energy crisis is decimating our economy. The ongoing high-stage loadshedding is putting many jobs at risk in our agriculture, retail, hospitality, and tourism sectors – to name a few.
Residents are actively having to provide for their own energy needs through gas, solar, inverters or other sources of power, while facing a back-breaking electricity price hike of 18.65% in 2023/24. This is completely unacceptable and quite frankly, extortionist.
It is high time that the National Government admits to their failure and institutes a ring-fenced State of Disaster on Eskom and the energy sector. This is essential because it would allow the government to speed up its internal processes in adding new generation capacity.
This should, however, be conducted in a transparent manner that allows competent provinces to chart the most appropriate way out of loadshedding.
To ensure government oversight during this crisis, the Provincial Standing Committee of Finance, Economic Opportunities and Tourism will be hosting a bi-annual standing committee focussing on green energy and mitigating loadshedding.
I have also submitted a parliamentary question to the Premier to unpack the impact of this electricity crisis on the government’s ability to deliver. I have asked what steps will be taken by the Provincial Government to mitigate the ANC-led national government’s abysmal failure which cripples essential service delivery to businesses.
The DA in the Western Cape remains committed to supporting the recovery and growth of our economy, businesses, and jobs. That is why we are calling for a ring-fenced State of Disaster to be declared in terms of the energy sector, to ensure that it can be addressed with the necessary urgency, and to avoid a looming humanitarian crisis.