South Africa: R63 Billion Municipal Debt Cripples Power Utility’s Distribution Capacity – South African News Briefs – August 21, 2023


Municipalities’ R63 Billion Debt to Power Utility Eskom Crippling Distribution Capacity

South African municipalities owe Eskom more than R63 billion, which is crippling the power utility’s distribution capacity and making it difficult to address distribution challenges in communities that still battle power cuts, reports The Citizen. Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said that the debt was due to a combination of factors, including the failure to collect revenue, illegal connections, and theft. The government is working on a number of initiatives to address the debt crisis, including providing financial assistance to municipalities, improving the collection of revenue, and cracking down on illegal connections and theft.

Ramaphosa Vows to Continue Fight Against Racial Exclusion

President Cyril Ramaphosa has addressed the issue of minority races feeling excluded from South Africa’s political landscape, emphasising ongoing efforts to establish a non-racial nation, reports EWN. Speaking at the 40th-anniversary celebration of the United Democratic Front (UDF) at Johannesburg City Hall, Ramaphosa noted that coloured and Indian individuals, along with white people, were instrumental in forming the UDF four decades ago. He acknowledged that these groups now feel marginalised in decision-making processes. The President highlighted that some white South Africans believe they don’t have a place in the country and have turned to divisive politics. Ramaphosa urged that these sentiments shouldn’t be disregarded. He reminded attendees at the event that the ruling African National Congress (ANC) has committed itself to creating a non-racial, non-sexist, and inclusive South Africa when it took governmental control in 1994.

Akani Simbine Disqualified After False Start at World Championships

South African sprinter Akani Simbine was disqualified from the semifinals of the 100m World Championships in Budapest due to a false start, reports News24. He had qualified with a time of 9.97 seconds. A reaction time of 0.078 seconds caused his disqualification in the second semifinal. Initially considering protesting, Simbine checked the screen and decided to accept the disqualification. This setback dashes his hopes of becoming the first African sprinter to win a 100m medal at the World Championships. Notably, he had been competing against 2019 world champion Christian Coleman and Zharnel Hughes, this year’s fastest sprinter. This disqualification is a setback for South Africa’s medal chances, as Simbine was a key figure, alongside Wayde van Niekerk and the 4x100m relay team.

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