Eskom ups load shedding as Newton Park floods

15:27 (GMT+2) Mon, 11 Feb 2019

State-owned power utility Eskom say its escalated rolling blackouts for Monday to "Stage 4" from "Stage 2" due to continued pressure on the national grid.

It says that since Monday morning, its unexpectedly lost six additional generating units which have put even more strain on the system.

The re implementation of load-shedding for the first time since the 9th of December, combined with localized flooding, caused chaos in the traffic in parts of Nelson Mandela Bay on Monday afternoon. 

A cloud burst over Newton Park left roads awash as manhole covers popped with the pressure of storm water drains not being able to handle the sudden increase in water volumes.

Meanwhile: Moody's ratings agency says the intended split of Eskom into three separate entities will allow for more transparency in its running, but will not do much to solve its financial problems.

Moodys says the move paves the way for a more transparent group with more clearly allocated revenue and cost between business segments but does little to address the power utility's financial challenges.

In his state of the nation address to Parliament last Thursday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said Eskom would be divided into Generation, Transmission and Distribution entities as part of a new business model to help turn it around.

He acknowledged that the power utility was in crisis and posed a significant risk to the South African economy, requiring bold decisions that would not affect the country's sovereign credit rating.

Ramaphosa also said Eskom would need more revenue through an affordable tariff increase.