31 March 2012

Electricity Backlog: Rural communities and Informal settlements hit hardest

In his 2011 state of the nation address, the president said 83% of the nation had been provided with electricity. However, according to materials released to SAHA through the Promotion of Access to Information Act, this is not quite the case.

In a document titled; Electricity Backlog Summary, which was released by the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME), indicates that the president's assertions on the state of electrification are not true.

The document points out total electrification of 64% when backlogs are factored in, a true reflection of the current state of affairs. The factoring in of the backlogs constitutes a variance of 19%, a huge margin by any standard.

The document clarifies the difference is due to the backlog Eskom and municipalities are having with the exponential growth of informal settlements in the urban areas and the inaccessibility of rural and farming communities.

For more information contact the Freedom of Information Programme.