Ramaphosa Promises To Resolve Energy And Crime Issues

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has met with business leaders in a bid to resolve a number of challenges to get the economy out of the woods.

South Africa is in the middle of an energy crisis with the economy shedding thousands of jobs.

Eskom has said loadshedding will continue to be in place for the next few months and this will be a tough winter.

Ramaphosa and business agreed that they need to resolve the energy crisis, deal with the rail crisis and crack down on corruption.

Police Minister Bheki Cele released crime statistics for the fourth quarter last week which showed a spike in violent crimes as well.

On the energy crisis, the government has said it would procure 9 000MW by the end of the year.

Electricity Minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa said six units from Medupi, Kusile and Koeberg will add more megawatts to the grid once they are back on stream by December.

Ramokgopa has said new generation capacity will ease loadshedding.

Last week, Transnet was forced to close the 86km rail line between Sishen in the Northern Cape and Saldanha in the Western Cape to transport iron ore because of sabotage.

It was reported the rail line between Johannesburg and Durban is operating at 25% because of cable theft.

The presidency confirmed on Wednesday that Ramaphosa met with leading business organisations in Pretoria on Tuesday to iron out some of these issues and take action.

Part of the decisions will relate to acting on these matters speedily.

Ramaphosa said the meeting will strengthen relations between government and business to resolve the challenges facing the economy.

“This initiative will make a real and marked difference in rebuilding our economy and setting it on a path of sustained inclusive growth.

“It is driven by a shared determination to overcome the severe challenges we currently face and to mobilise the country’s substantial capabilities towards the achievement of that goal.

“We welcome this commitment from business and undertake as Government to work to ensure the success of this partnership,” said Ramaphosa.

Minister in the Presidency responsible for State Security, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni said they will be attending to these matters.

“In line with our commitment to mobilise the resources and capabilities of social partners to enable collective action to address the challenges facing our country, government welcomes the support of business in three priority focus areas – energy, transport and logistics, and crime and corruption.

“This will enable joint action, alongside other social partners, on these critical challenges to set our country on a path to recovery,” said Ntshavheni.

Business Unity South Africa (Busa) and Business for South Africa (B4SA) said they welcomed the initiative to work together to address these challenges.

They said they believe they will be able to remove all the obstacles and create an environment that will drive growth.

Source IOL

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