Numsa threatens Eskom probe

Photos_Web_Photo_Eskom_04_04_2013

File: Pay talks between the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) and Eskom have reached a deadlock.

JOHANNESBURG - Numsa is threatening to launch a probe which will investigate claims of mismanagement at Eskom.

It says South Africa is paying a heavy price for Eskom&39;s mistakes.  

Eskom has had to pay billions for coal it has not been able to use, particularly due to the delay in the construction of its Medupi power station.

Metalworkers&39; union Numsa says it’s tired of empty promises and excuses and wants to see the coal industry nationalised to ensure cheaper electricity.

Numsa&39;s national sector coordinator Stephen Nhlapo said coal is fairly expensive and therefore making electricity expensive.

“If we want to create jobs, we need to create cheap electricity to empower the industry,” said Nhlapo.

The union is also critical of what it says is a lack of skills training at Eskom.

Numsa says the utility has made a huge mistake in letting many of its older and experienced workers leave the company.

“They get huge pension funds and return as consultants. Now, if I&39;m a consultant... do you think I&39;m going to empower you to take over my job?

"I&39;m not going to train you. And that is what is happening," he said. 

"Eskom is not training people. But when they do train people, they do it on soft skills or skills that are not needed in Eskom."

Numsa will now launch a comprehensive investigation into Eskom, as well as other parastatals like Transnet.

The union says it&39;s worried that South Africans are increasingly struggling to afford basic services such as electricity and public transport.

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