Court orders Emfuleni to let Eskom take care of the municipality’s electricity business

Eskom has welcomed the Pretoria Gauteng High Court’s order granted against the Emfuleni Local Municipality (ELM) on 5 July 2023 where the court found the municipality in contempt of the full court order issued on 18 November 2018, and failure to pay Eskom unlawful and unconstitutional.

The court ordered the ELM to appoint Eskom as its service delivery agent to perform all functions and services relating to the municipality’s electricity business on behalf of the municipality.

This court judgement comes after the municipality failed to adhere to an order issued in November 2018, where relief was granted to eight ELMindustrial customers to pay Eskom directly.

This order was not adhered to due to non-compliance by the municipality. Eskom, joined by other applicants,approached the court again for relief and the matter was heard in March 2023.

In the judgement issued on 5 July 2023, the court also ordered that in the interim industrial customers pay Eskom directly pending the implementation of the agreement between the power utility and the municipality.

The two parties are further ordered to implement and finalise the terms of this agreement within six months from the date of the order subject to the appropriate oversight from the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA). The municipality and NERSA are jointly and severally liable for the costs of the application.

“Eskom as a responsible organ of the state intends to comply with this order and looks forward to working with Emfuleni to ensure that service delivery becomes a core focus. The partnership between the power utility and municipality will benefit the customers, stakeholders,and community at large,” said Eskom in a statement issued this afternoon.

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