Friday, March 12, 2010

Eskom and Cosatu


Thursday 11 March 2010, The Mercury newspaper reported that a row between Eskom and Cosatu had erupted after it had come to light that Eskom is allegedly giving preferential rates to 138 of its large industrial users. Apparently 10 of the biggest consumers haven’t been subjected to tariff increases since 1994 and Cosatu, as Cosatu does, are threatening to mobilize on the streets.

Taking into consideration two pieces recently published by the Association, “Middle Class Takes the Pain” and “Eskom's Power Struggle” perhaps Casatu are indeed justified.

In “Middle Class Takes the Pain” we report (based on a Sunday Times expose) that that the middle class can't cope with high bills and Punitive Taxes. The key numbers they provide to illustrate are:
  • A 25% increase next month in the price of electricity, which will double by 2012;
  • Rising petrol prices - from R4.41 a litre two years ago to R7.91 now;
  • School fees, up this year by between 8% and 15%; and
  • Medical aid contributions, up by about 11% this year after a 12% hike last year.
One wonders how many habitual Cosatu detractors, are secretly grateful that somebody is taking a stand.

Ernest Roper
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