Cost-cutting measures, including reducing the number of managers, remain part of Eskom’s turnaround plan, public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan said on Thursday. Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa, under pressure from unions, told parliament that references to cost-cutting “should be understood not to mean retrenchments. The preferred strategy in reducing human resources costs will be to offer voluntary packages to staff.” Ramaphosa also announced that the utility will be split into three units: generation, transmission and distribution. With a debt load of more than R400bn it cannot service from revenue, Eskom is regarded as a major risk to SA’s finances. In the budget tabled this week by finance minister Tito Mboweni, provision was made for financial support of R69bn to the cash-strapped utility over three years. Treasury officials said support will total about R150bn over the next 10 years as part of plans to rescue it. The power utility, which has struggled with maintenan...

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