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'Every month, I disconnect. Within hours, Prasa pays!'

28 February 2020 10:18 AM
Tags:
Eskom
PRASA
Kieno Kammies
Alwie Lester

Kieno Kammies interviews Eskom's Alwie Lester, the person ultimately responsible for cutting Prasa’s power yesterday.

On Thursday during peak afternoon rush hour, Eskom cut the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s supply of electricity due to non-payment.

Thousands of hardworking people, most too poor to afford alternative transport, were stuck with no way to get home.

About 500 000 people make use of the unreliable, creaking trains every day in Cape Town, according to Metrorail.

Commuters are standing outside the Cape Town train station on 27 February 2020 after services were suspended due electricity non-payment to Eskom. Picture: Kaylynn Palm/EWN.

Kieno Kammies interviewed Alwie Lester, Eskom’s General Manager in the Western Cape.

Lester was the person ultimately responsible for cutting Prasa’s power yesterday.

Prasa declined an invitation to talk.

We don’t take these decisions lightly… Let me explain to you the process…

Alwie Lester, Western Cape General Manager - Eskom

[Prasa had ample warning] it’s not the first time we’ve done this... Earlier in the month, we disconnected Kuilsriver, Strand... We informed Prasa that we’re going to progressively disconnect them…

Alwie Lester, Western Cape General Manager - Eskom

This is the first time Prasa hasn’t responded up until we disconnected… Prasa should put out a notice to their customers so people can plan…

Alwie Lester, Western Cape General Manager - Eskom

I’m not convinced that we won’t have this situation next month again… I have this surprise every month! I disconnect and then within a few hours, there’s payment!

Alwie Lester, Western Cape General Manager - Eskom

We give them a courtesy call, warning them that we’re going to disconnect… If you get a service or product, you must pay for it…

Alwie Lester, Western Cape General Manager - Eskom

Listen to the interview in the audio below.

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28 February 2020 10:18 AM
Tags:
Eskom
PRASA
Kieno Kammies
Alwie Lester

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