Cape Town, News

No respite from loadshedding during peak-hour traffic due to increased power demand.

by Morné Esben

Eskom confirmed on Tuesday night that sadly they won’t be able to provide that much-needed respite from loadshedding between 6 and 9 in the morning, despite saying they’d try their best to.

The power utility also couldn’t manage to stave off power cuts during 4 and 6 in the afternoon as they’d done the day before.

Eskom says it’s experiencing higher demand than usual and that Stage 2 loadshedding will continue until 6 on Thursday morning.

Suspending power cuts in the morning between 6am and 9am and in the afternoon between 4pm and 6pm is a new initiative intended to lessen the impact of load shedding on commuters.

Eskom’s CEO Andre de Ruyter has said this week that for the next 18 months or so there would be an increased likelihood of load shedding as Eskom undertakes delayed maintenance at its power stations.

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We’d been hoping to get some clarity over the events that led up to the kidnapping of a two-month old baby boy and where he currently finds himself.

But sadly, power cuts put that process on hold for a few days.

The learner accused of kidnapping two month old baby Kwahlelo Tiwane, has been remanded in custody until Thursday.

18-year-old Karabo Tau’s bail application continued in the Bellville Magistrate’s Court yesterday.

But the case was postponed due to loadshedding.

The court room was packed with some of Tau’s schoolmates, who came to show support.

The defence lawyer told the court that four witnesses will take the stand.

Those include Tau, her mother, one of Tau’s teachers, and the person responsible for the CCTV footage at her school.

Tau was arrested about two weeks ago, a few days after Baby Kwahlelo was abducted on the 16th of January in Parow.

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The National Health Insurance Bill has been a massive talking point around the dinner tables and braais across the country and of course it’s evoked lots of reaction and doom from opposition political parties.

The lack of clarity is what most people are concerned about. In its current form, the NHI bill is vague and doesn’t outline very clearly how it expects to improve health services to all South Africans. It also doesn’t have a clear answer to what happens with those South Africans who’ve been part of medical aids. Will they recieve the same level of care and service they’ve become accustomed to? Or will the public health sector be upgraded to match what private hospitals are offering?

It’s these sort of questions on people’s lips at the moment.

We’ve got to commend government for putting the initiative on the table, but there are massive holes in the bill and at this stage, more questions than answers. That’s why it’s important for South Africans to participate in these public hearings.

The Public hearings on the NHI happens in the Western Cape this week after wrapping up roadshows in the North West and the Free State.

The portfolio committee for health began it’s regional round of public engagements on the bill yesterday in Piketberg.

The group will be at the Khayelitsha Hall on Wednesday at 16h30.

On Thursday residents of George will get the opportunity to have their say on the bill, while the committee will visit the Central Karoo District on Saturday.

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AND INTERNATIONALLY, we’ll unpack US President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address. The President’s speech largely took a positive tone where he spoke about prosperity and inclusivity.

His speech falls against the backdrop of an impeachment inquiry and comes just a day before Republicans are set to formally acquit him in the impeachment trial.

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