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Darlene Creamer

OWN GOAL

7th May 2021 While football fans, especially in England, were angrily protesting a fatally flawed plan to create a closed-shop super league for a handful of elite European clubs, anger was growing in South Africa over the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP), which is... 

ROAD LESS TRAVELLED

30th April 2021 South Africa is big on shiny new things, including mega infrastructure projects. The country is less big, however, when it comes to maintaining that infrastructure across its full life cycle. While the recent fire at Johannesburg’s Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital put a spotlight on... 

HIKES & LEVIES

23rd April 2021 The fuel price and power tariff hikes implemented at the start of this month bring back painful memories of surging energy prices ahead of the Covid-19 pandemic. They have also placed the spotlight on the additional taxes and levies that are included in South Africa’s fuel prices, as well as the... 

END OF THE BEGINNING

16th April 2021 There is no question that South Africa has been sluggish in its preparations for a mass vaccination campaign to combat the Covid-19 virus. Nevertheless, the ‘end of the beginning’ is at last in sight, with the procurement of sufficient doses of both the Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer vaccines to... 

DEBT SHEDDING

9th April 2021 The unsustainable nature of Eskom’s debt profile is well known. Less clear, however, is what should be done about it. The State-owned utility has indicated on several occasions that it would be able to wean itself off of ongoing taxpayer support with a debt burden that is half the current level... 

ROCK & HARD PLACE

2nd April 2021 The ‘Rockman’ statue at the entrance to Eskom’s Megawatt Park head office in Johannesburg exemplifies the current difficult reality facing the State-owned utility. While its maintenance efforts are likely to improve the performance of its coal fleet in the short-term, a good portion of that fleet... 

(LOCK)DOWN MEMORY LANE

26th March 2021 “From midnight on Thursday 26 March until midnight on Thursday 16 April, all South Africans will have to stay at home,” President Cyril Ramaphosa declared on March 23 in the first of what subsequently became known as his Covid-19 ‘family meetings’. With the benefit of hindsight, it is clear that... 

SPILLING THE TEA

19th March 2021 The world was captivated, earlier this month, by Oprah Winfrey’s interview with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, during which some piping hot Earl Grey was most definitely spilled. In South Africa, by contrast, the brew being served and spilled during the now regular... 

CLIFF-HANGER

12th March 2021 The credibility of Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s 2021 Budget hangs largely on the outcome of upcoming wage negotiations with public sector unions. There are serious doubts as to whether the proposed freeze on increases will be sustained. With the unions seeking inflation-plus hikes, South... 

WATER WORRIES

5th March 2021 The South African Human Rights Commission’s scathing findings on Emfuleni’s dismal mismanagement of water infrastructure, which has resulted in serious pollution of the Vaal river, Gauteng's most vital water resource, is sadly not an isolated incident. A benchmarking survey of 144 municipal water... 

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