Johannesburg - The government will do everything in its
power to avoid power outages, Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said on
"We do have long-term plans. Government remains
resolute that the country should never go through another period of painful
rotational load shedding as experienced in the past," Gigaba told
reporters in Pretoria.
"We will do everything in our power to avoid load
shedding and blackouts... The next 18 months are expected to be the tightest we
had endured thus far."
Gigaba said there would be less pressure on the power supply
when the first unit of the Medupi power station started working in December
"In this regard, Eskom is on track," he said.
The backlog of maintenance at power stations should be
eliminated by December 2013. There was a tight balance between the supply and
demand of electricity, he said.
"As we enter the winter season, residential customers
are increasing their demand, causing significant increases during the evening
peak," Gigaba said.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames said electricity demand peaked daily
between 5pm and 9pm.