Bantering with mining executives ahead of his address to the Minerals Council SA's AGM this week, mineral resources & energy minister Gwede Mantashe asked whether as a former miner he could vote in the council's elections for office bearers. "Only if you give us our 50MW," was the riposte from outgoing council president Mxolisi Mgojo.

It was a moment that reflected the dispute between the mining industry and Mantashe over the 10MW cap, above which companies have to go through the long and cumbersome process of applying for licences to generate their own electricity - as many want to do as they seek cleaner, cheaper and more reliable alternatives to reliance on Eskom...

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