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'We should be asking Oracle, why are you ripping our state-owned entities off?'

7 April 2021 1:30 PM
Tags:
Eskom
Loadshedding
OUTA
Oracle

The service provider agreed on a downward revision of over 90% on Eskom's bill, says Outa CEO Wayne Duvenhage.

Eskom says it has taken steps to protect its operations from disruptions after a contractual dispute with Oracle Corp.’s South African unit put its technical support services at risk.

Eskom confirmed there is a disagreement in which Oracle initially claimed Eskom underpaid it by about R7.3 billion. While the amount was later reduced between the parties, Oracle rejected Eskom’s settlement offer of R166 million and threatened to terminate its services, the power utility said in an emailed statement.

On Tuesday Eskom spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha spoke to Keino Kammies and insisted the dispute and possible termination of services by Oracle would not cause loadshedding.

RELATED: No loadshedding will result from Oracle contract dispute, assures Mantshantsha

Kieno talks to the CEO of the lobby group, the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) Wayne Duvenhage who disagrees.

Going back a step, Duvenhage says questions need to be asked as to how this service provider was willing to settle on such a lesser amount of R400 million, far lower than the original bill of R7.3 billion.

It is very frustrating that you have these service providers to state-owned entities that rack up these massive bills, and unless these SOEs have the expertise - which seems to now be coming into place with Eskom under new management there - you would find they would have probably got away with it and somebody would have paid this amount in the past.

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

We should be asking Oracle, why are you ripping our state-owned entities off?

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

He says there have been a number of occasions where service providers have overbilled.

This makes me so angry.

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

Eskom erred in rushing off to take out an urgent interdict against Oracle, argues Duvenhage.

The power utility is doing a good job bringing major projects to an end, clawing back money and over-expenditure, as well as resolving coal contracts, but he says Eskom shoots itself in the foot when they do this.

They have done this before to get urgent interdicts...and the courts throw these things out if they are not really urgent, so it does not do Eskom any good for their management's credibility.

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

They should have tried to resolve it, especially if Oracle had reduced the price to R400 million.

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

Duvenhage says perhaps Oracle was threatening to stop the services.

They were critical services for Eskom - they run the pre-paid vending, fault logging, complaints centre, and maintenance call outs.

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

And it still leaves the question of seeming overbilling unanswered.

If it was just a downward revision of the amount owing of 15 to 20% one could understand it, but a downward revision of over 90%?

Wayne Duvenage, CEO - Outa

Listen to the interview with Wayne Duvenhage in the audio below:




7 April 2021 1:30 PM
Tags:
Eskom
Loadshedding
OUTA
Oracle

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