Power utility Eskom says it will implement load-shedding on the weekend as a result of temporarily suspending stage 2 load-shedding for five hours on Friday to allow Parliament to pass Appropriation Bills.
This comes after it received a request from the Deputy Speaker of Parliament to stop load-shedding to allow for a virtual sitting of assembly.
“Stage 2 load-shedding will be suspended rom 12:00 to 17:00 his afternoon in order for a virtual sitting of Parliament to pass a series of Appropriation Bills,” Eskom stated.
Eskom said that passing these bills was essential to keeping government operating, as without the relevant appropriations there would be no funding for key state functions, such as hospitals, law enforcement, and other essential services.
The utility said suspending load-shedding was possible thanks to large industrial power consumers in South Africa who agreed to reduce their consumption for this period.
However, it will also have to use some emergency reserves this afternoon, thereby depleting gains in replenishing them that were made over the past few days of load-shedding.
“In order to replenish these reserves and prepare for the week ahead, stage 2 load-shedding will resume at 17:00 this afternoon and continue until 22:00 on Sunday, 6 June,” Eskom stated.
Eskom apologised for the inconvenience and uncertainty caused by the interruptions in electricity supply.
“The power system remains constrained and vulnerable and Eskom will communicate promptly should there be any changes.”
“All South Africans are urged to reduce their use of electricity in the national interest, particularly between 12:00 and 17:00 on Friday, as well as over the weekend,” it added.
Why load-shedding will be suspended
Appropriation bills, which are also referred to as supply or spending bills, are proposed laws which authorise the expenditure of government funds for specific purposes.
Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha previously told MyBroadband the regulatory code made provision for accommodating certain changes to load-shedding.
This includes keeping Parliament and the Union Buildings off load-shedding schedules during events of national importance.
In order to allow parliament to pass the Appropriation Bill, Stage 2 loadshedding will be suspended from 12:00 to 17:00 today@News24 @SABCNews @NewzroomAfrika @eNCA @IOL @ewnupdates @SundayTimesZA @SowetanLIVE @dailysunsa pic.twitter.com/d4naqeHG7B
— Eskom Hld SOC Ltd (@Eskom_SA) June 4, 2021