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Freeze Eskom executive pay: DA

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Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown should freeze the “exorbitant pay” Eskom’s executives get, the DA said on Wednesday.

“Eskom paid its top executives a total of R60 million in the 2014 financial year, up from R57.4m the year before,” Democratic Alliance MP Natasha Michael said in a statement.

“With nine members on Eskom’s executive committee it is shocking that R24.4m was paid to three individuals — the CEO, the financial director, and the operations director.”

According to Eskom’s 2014 integrated report, its CEO took home a pay package of R15.36m in the 2013/14 financial year, compared to R8.46m in the 2012/13 financial year.

Michael said she would write to Brown on Wednesday urging her to impose a moratorium on pay hikes for Eskom’s “clearly failing” executives.

“It is disgusting that Eskom executives are being paid record salaries as the country has to face disruptive load shedding,” she said.

“In any private sector environment, someone who oversees such a monumental failure would be fired, but at Eskom the salaries just keep going up and up no matter the performance of the organisation.”

Executive pay had to be frozen until Eskom overcome its supply shortage, Michael said.

“It’s time for Eskom to tighten its belt and to stop rewarding poor performance.”

Earlier on Wednesday, Eskom said the power system was tight but manageable, with no rolling blackouts expected.

“No load shedding expected as things stand,” spokesman Andrew Etzinger said.

“We are taking this week one day at a time, so no guarantees for tomorrow [Thursday] at this stage.”

A silo which stored over 10,000 tons of coal at the Majuba power station in Mpumalanga collapsed on Saturday, affecting coal supplies to all six units at the power station.

On Tuesday, trade union Solidarity said the silo had been showing signs of stress since January and Eskom had done nothing to correct the problem.

Etzinger said the silo was inspected last year.

Before the collapse, Majuba supplied 3600MW, roughly 10 percent of the country’s electricity capacity, Etzinger said on Sunday.

Its capacity was reduced to 1800MW and then to 600MW. According to Eskom this had since been increased to 1200MW.

Eskom warned the collapse could cause rolling blackouts across the country. SAPA

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