The ongoing crisis that is Eskom has reference, with crippling rolling blackouts heralding the start of the new year.  Independent power producers (IPPs) say they are “ready and able to step into the breach and provide surplus electricity quickly and cheaply”. That is at a cost of 40c/kWh, compared with Eskom’s 90c/kWh.

But energy minister Gwede Mantashe wants none of it, punting coal mining to save 87,000 jobs in the sector, many of them held by members of the National Union of Mineworkers, which Mantashe led from 1998 to 2006. This is to the detriment of the other 57-million South Africans, of businesses, of the economy, job creation, investment, clean energy creation and prospects for positive assessments from the ratings agencies, leading to increased crime levels, poverty and escalated skills migration...

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