Eskom not worried by looming coal mine strike


Power utility Eskom says it is not perturbed by the wage strike looming in the coal mining sector.

The utility reassured consumers that it has a healthy stockpile of coal across its coal-fired power stations, so there is no need to worry. Eskom added that it was working around the clock to reclaim current stockpiles, while also building up operational stockpiles to alleviate possible stress caused by the impending strike.

Wage negotiations broke down last week, following which the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) announced that it had received a certificate of non-resolution to the dispute from the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), enabling it to announce a strike.

The strike is set to begin on Sunday, November 20.

As Eskom works to put out one fire in its midst, however, it faces another in the form of financial challenges.

An internal report on the company's financial state has painted a bleak picture, as the company struggles with funding and declining liquidity.

Eskom's Khulu Phasiwe said that the company will continue with the cost-cutting measures it has in place internally, which at this point does not include retrenchments.

"We’ll just continue to do other things without compromising the quality of work we need to do at our power stations," Phasiwe confirmed.