Electricity costs could rise by 15%: eThekwini municipality


Tough day for Eskom acting CEO Brian Molefe as he asks Nersa for yet another bailout.

JOHANNESBURG - Consumers are keeping a close eye on Nersa&39;s public hearings into Eskom&39;s application for a tariff increase, which opened on Monday.

A decision in favour of the power utility will definitely hit their pockets hard.

eNCA spoke to some electricity users who are worried about potential price hikes.

Yoshina Kistensamy pays about R800 on average for electricity each month.

It’s one of the many bills in their four-member household.

The mother of two says another electricity increase will affect the family&39;s quality of life.

“That would mean cutting back on a bit of the luxuries maybe take outs, treats for the kids, maybe having to look at our additional expenditure to see where we would have to pull that money out from,” said the eThekwini Resident

With an eight percent electricity increase already approved from April, if Nersa agrees to any extra hikes this year, the squeeze on homes and businesses will be severe.

The eThekwini Municipality estimates their cost of supplying electricity to consumers could go up by a total of 15 percent if Eskom&39;s request is approved.

David Green’s panel-beating business has been operating for almost ten years.

It’s a power-intensive operation, costing roughly R6,000 in electricity fees every month.

Eskom’s proposed hike could see Green forking out an extra thousand rand but this is money Green says he can’t afford.

"With our costs going up and the turnover in our business not going up, the next step is short time or laying off staff. That, unfortunately, is what&39;s going to happen" the business owner said.

Nersa’s public hearings on Eskom’s application are expected to be wrapped up next month.