Eskom has plans to stop strike blackouts

Image courtesy stock.xchnge

Image courtesy stock.xchnge

Eskom has contingency plans in place to ensure that widespread blackouts, as threatened by the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) through unprotected strikes, do not come to pass, spokesperson Andrew Etzinger said yesterday.

“We can’t go into specifics of what these measures are, but we are fully aware of the additional risks such a scenario could create and have planned accordingly,” he said, as potential sabotage of the plans remained of grave concern.

Etzinger estimated that out of 30 000 Eskom employees affiliated to trade unions, around half were Numsa members.

“All are what we call bargaining unit employees, those below the supervisory level of management, which make up the majority of Eskom’s workforce,” he said.

The union’s threat came after Eskom interdicted its employees against participating in the recent metal, steel and engineering sector strike action because of the power utility’s essential service status.

Etzinger said that disciplinary action would be instituted against any employee who acted outside the ambit of their service agreements, with dismissal a possible repercussion.

He said police intervention during potential unprotected strike action was largely circumstantial and would likely be aimed at protecting Eskom’s assets and non-striking employees, with arrests dependent on the conduct of and risks posed by those involved at the time.

eskom graphic






today in print