Western Cape the only province that has an emergency plan in place in case of total grid collapse

Issued by Kevin Mileham MP – DA Shadow Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy
13 Apr 2023 in News

South Africa is edging ever closer to total grid collapse. In the interest of responsible governance, we need to have a plan in place at every level of government to deal with such a crisis.

To ensure that each province is prepared, we sent eight PAIA applications on 16 February 2023 to all premiers, excluding the Western Cape, who provided their report on request. Each PAIA application included a request for a document outlining the respective provinces’ plans in the event of a disaster such as a total grid collapse, where the country is without power for days or weeks on end.

Despite this simple request, only the DA led Western Cape has a plan in place to effectively deal with this looming crisis.

In addition to this, the Western Cape is also planning to roll out emergency load-shedding kits to 100 000 indigent households at a cost of R60 million. This plan was announced by Premier Alan Winde during his State of the Province address earlier this year.

Of grave concern is that of all the provinces, only the Free State Premier came back to say they did not have the required information and referred it to the Free State department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA). The Eastern Cape, on the other hand, said that the application was being processed – to date nothing has been received.

Additionally, PAIA requests were also sent to each of the provincial CoGTA departments on the same day, with more or less the same concerning response.

Of the provincial CoGTA departments, only Limpopo responded, requesting payment of the application first before they proceed, this despite a total of 16 applications having been sent to 18 different people.

To date, no other Premier or Provincial CoGTA department has responded to applications. The failure of 16 different government departments to respond to such a simple request is worrying.

The DA will now be lodging appeals of these PAIA applications to each of the departments and premiers who failed to respond to the request.

Due to the very likelihood that not a single one of these provinces has a plan in place to mitigate a total grid collapse, the DA will also be lodging a PAIA request to the National Minister of CoGTA to request a copy of the national disaster plan in the event South Africa succumbs to a total grid collapse.

The DA will continue to fight for South Africans, so that if the ANC’s self-made disaster of a total electrical grid collapse occurs, we will have proper, methodical plans in place to deal with any crisis, and we will not be flung into yet another declared state of disaster.