Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa visited Eskom on Thursday and described the under-strain power utility as a “glorious company”, its CEO said.
“The deputy president referred to it as a glorious company,” Eskom CEO Tshediso Matona told reporters in Johannesburg.
In the same briefing, Matona warned that there would be no end soon to load shedding, or scheduled blackouts.
“This is a pattern that Eskom is going to find itself in for some time to come.”
Matona said he had been with the company for three and a half months.
“I have come to understand much more deeply the nature of the problem and what is required to deal with it.
“We know what the problem is [and] we know what solution is required to get out of the situation that we find ourself in, as Eskom and as a country.”
Eskom is like a car that has not been maintained, Matona said.
“The metaphor of a car is very useful. If you continue to drive a car without maintaining it, it will carry you but at some point it breaks down.
“I think this is what is happening with many generating units at Eskom.”
Eskom has had a “maintenance philosophy” but it did not always stick to it.
“Eskom has not stayed faithful to that maintenance religion for a very, long time. The reliability of our equipment is the price we are paying,” the CEO said.