Stellenbosch mayor, Gesie van Deventer, says the Stellenbosch Municipality started fighting back in January 2021 to protect residents and businesses from loadshedding.

Van Deventer says the municipality has determined that the town needs 75MW of electricity, during peak times, to completely avoid the implementation of loadshedding.

She says the ultimate goal is to, in the near future, be completely independent of Eskom for electricity.

Van Deventer says the municipality supports the DA’s call for Eskom to be declared a state of disaster.

She agrees that drastic change is needed at the power utility to restore the country’s generation capabilities to full capacity.

The Democratic Alliance this week called on the government to declare a state of disaster at power-utility, Eskom.

The party says ridding the country of loadshedding is a whole of society approach anchored on making energy-generation South Africa’s biggest priority over the next 5 years.

DA spokesperson for Energy, Kevin Mileham says loadshedding has robbed unemployed South Africans of the chance of finding employment.

Mileham says the power interruptions also damage the country’s reputation as an investment destination.

Read the mayor’s complete statement here.

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has promised that there will be real-time audits done of all state funds allocated to the victims of the recent floods.

Addressing a joint sitting of Parliament on Tuesday, 26 April, Ramaphosa said it’s disappointing that the public debate in the immediate aftermath of the disaster was that government officials would loot the disaster relief funds. “It is a great source of shame that when this disaster struck, the most burning public debate was around fears that the resources allocated to respond to this disaster would be misappropriated or wasted.”

Ramaphosa assured Members of Parliament that they will not tolerate corruption: “Working together with National Treasury, the Auditor-General will conduct real-time audits on the emergency flood relief funds. This will provide independent assurance on whether public funds have been appropriately accounted for and were used for their intended purpose.”

“These audits aim to prevent, detect and report on the findings to ensure an immediate response to prevent leakage, potential fraud, and wastage.”

While opposition parties criticized Ramaphosa and the national government’s response to the tragedy, the President insists at this time of mourning; government is doing all it can to assist flood victims.

 

 

 

 

Well-known academic, professor Dewald van Niekerk says the current transitional regulations, in place for the next 30 days, can be challenged in court.

The regulations came into effect after the State of Disaster regulations fell away at midnight last week Monday evening.

Van Niekerk, founder and head of the African Centre for Disaster Studies at North-West University spoke to Newsroom Afrika and says the transitional regulations baffle his mind.

He says any regulation, to be enforceable, should function under some form of law.

Read more on the regulations here.

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Millions of South Africans who will lose access to monthly Covid-19 allowances, should government decide to immediately scrap the national state of disaster.

According to dr. Mosa Moshabela, from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, the R350 Covid-19 grant would fall away if the state of disaster is lifted.

The grants have been provided to millions of residents over the past 2 years,

Moshabela says there are still too many mechanisms that need to be put in place before the national state of disaster can be lifted.

Read more here and here.

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With calls continuing across South Africa to have the national state of disaster lifted, some experts caution against lifting the restrictions prematurely.

The regulations were implemented in March of 2020 at the start of the national lockdown.

Many scientists and civil rights group say the state of disaster measures, meant to curb the spread of Covid-19, are no longer needed.

Infectious diseases expert at the WITS University, Professor Francois Venter spoke to eNCA and had this to say.

Venter says it’s time the regulations are abolished.

Meanwhile Dr. Mosa Moshabela, the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Innovation, at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, says it would not be so easy to do away with the State of Disaster.

He says even though he agrees that it is time to do away with these measures, the regulations should rather be done away with in a gradual, controlled manner.

Moshabela says South Africa does not have the legislative framework to fall back on, should it do away with the Disaster Risk Management Act.

Read more here and here.

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