Corporate delivery in a decade of democracy
Clairwyn Van der Merwe
Published: 01-MAY-04

Two - thirds of South Africa's largely rural population was still without electricity by the late 1980s. Eskom committed itself to a massive electrification programme to enhance living standards, support economic growth and provide sustainable development, writes Clairwyn Van der merwe

In 1994, South Africa's first year of democratic rule, Eskom committed itself to achieving 10 key objectives by 2004, in line with the government's Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP).

These were:

  • reducing the real price of electricity by 15 percent, making it the world's lowest-cost producer of electricity
  • electrifying an additional 1 750 000 homes, improving the lives of 11 million South Africans
  • changing its staff profile - 50 percent of management, professional and supervisory staff would be black South Africans
  • educating, training and upgrading sufficient numbers of people to meet Eskom's future managerial, technical and other professional staff needs
  • maintaining transparency and worker consultation in decision-making
  • contributing R50 million per year to the electrification of schools, clinics and other community development activities - particularly in rural areas
  • enabling all employees to own a home
  • encouraging small and medium enterprise development - through buying policies and by managerial support
  • protecting the environment
  • financing all these from South African and own resources, and from overseas development funding.

Eskom has met and, in some cases exceeded, some of the targets it had set itself. A case in point is in electrification where the target was exceeded by 750 homes a year ahead of schedule in November 1999.

In a bid to help women balance work and parenting responsibilities, flexible working hours and work-from-home options have been introduced. The organisation has also implemented employment equity policies inclusive of race, gender and people with disabilities. This is to ensure that it builds an organisation representative of all the people of South Africa.

Eskom is committed to the training and skills development of all employees and that of South Africans in a broader context. As a result, it plays a significant leadership, development and management role within the Energy Sector Education and Training Authority (ESETA).

South Africa's first year of democracy also saw the official opening of Kendal power station, the world's biggest dry-cooled power station. In its first full year of operation, Kendal set a world record for a six-unit power station when its maximum hourly net power produced reached 4,056 MW in September 1994.

The utilisation of water is amongst the lowest in the world. Since 1994 Eskom's average specific water consumption figures have been maintained at levels less than or equal to 1,29 l/kWh (volume of water consumed per unit of power sent out by all generating stations, excluding rain and mine water used). In 1997 the lowest level achieved was 1.20 l/kWh.

Print this page Send this article to a friend

Subscribe now!
Subscribe to Business in Africa magazine now and receive full access to this website.
Find out more...

Market news on your cellphone
Get live JSE listed shares, warrants, major indices, brent crude oil, international markets, agricultural futures & daily market analysis via SMS on your mobile.
Find out more...

Eskom leaders forum
African business and public sector leaders define and construct a prosperous future for the continent.
Find out more...

Online travel bookings
Planning to travel? Book accommodation in Africa & South Africa here.
Book now...

�Have your say
Chat on the Business in Africa forums with other readers about the issues of the day, affecting Africa.
Post your comment...

Calculate the latest currency rates for Africa and world currencies
Find out more...

Have your magazine delivered via the Web, anywhere in the world, directly to your PC!
Find out more...

Contact us | About us | Newsletter | Subscription centre | Advertising

All material copyright Business in Africa. All rights reserved. Material may not be published or reproduced in any form without prior written permission. Read these terms & conditions. Read our privacy statement and security statement. Powered by Mail & Guardian Online &