Eskom group chief executive 100 days update

Eskom CEO Dan Marokane talks of his first 100 days in office. Supplied

Eskom CEO Dan Marokane talks of his first 100 days in office. Supplied

Published Jun 16, 2024


On Friday Eskom Group Chief Executive (GCE) Dan Marokane shared progress from his first 100 days in office towards addressing Eskom’s business challenges and to repositioning the utility for growth and sustainability.

The first 100 days have been focused on assessing the effectiveness of the Generation Operational Recovery Plan, reviewing the progress on the implementation of Eskom’s unbundling, and engaging with internal and external stakeholders to create and build alignment, as well as putting in place the building blocks for the creation of a competitive and sustainable Eskom.

The Generation performance has shown a steep change, with almost 80 days of no load shedding to date and unplanned outages consistently around 12GW (with a low of 9.5GW at one point), that is below the winter planning assumption of 15.5GW which would trigger up to Stage 2 load shedding on some days.

This performance comes from a sustained multi-dimensional programme consisting of adequate human resources, aggressive planned maintenance on the back of financial certainty, the use of Original Equipment Manufacturers for critical systems, and progressive implementation of interventions in response to the VGBe findings.

This improved performance has also had a positive impact on Eskom’s financials given the significant year-on-year reduction in the usage of diesel through Open-Cycle Gas Turbines, translating to over R4 billion in savings in the current financial year.

Eskom’s executives and employees have helped deliver these significant results to date and we have a good base to build on. I have also noticed a significant improvement in morale.

In the area of the unbundling of the business, the plans are on track to operationalise the National Transmission Company of South Africa on July 1, 2024, following the fulfilment of the suspensive conditions at the end of March 2024.

As part of incorporating the lessons learned from the unbundling of the transmission business, Eskom is concluding the process of augmenting our internal resources with external support for the focused unbundling project management unit to drive efficiencies for the remainder of the programme.

This expected to enable a faster execution of the unbundling process in line with international trends.

The GCE’s stakeholder engagement has seen us address over 10 000 employees in person – one quarter of the entire workforce - as well as engage over 200 stakeholders in the areas of government, organised business and labour, original equipment manufacturers and financial institutions.

This process was used to create awareness and alignment on the tactical shifts required for the strategic direction of the business, and to further improve engagement with our employees.

We are putting the building blocks in place to rebuild trust and credibility in Eskom through transparent performance, with the intent to re-affirm the company as worthy of further future investment as we undertake our strategic initiatives.

It is our intention to remain a critical player in South Africa’s evolving future energy market,.

Delivering on the strategic initiatives: Over the next 36 months Eskom will pursue its strategy across a number of key initiatives to deliver value. These include:

– Increasing the Energy Availability Factor (EAF) to 70% in the next 12 to 36 months.

– Returning more than 2.5GW in capacity to the grid by March 2025 and developing an executable initial pipeline of at least 2GW of clean energy projects by 2026.

– Re-baselining the cost trajectory and improving efficiencies.

– Advocating and pursuing a sustainable solution on municipality debt.

– Delivering the unbundling of the Distribution and Generation divisions.

– Accelerating the implementation of initiatives to enable a Just Energy Transition.

Eskom will continue to focus on implementing generation recovery, strengthening governance and tackling crime and corruption, while future proofing the organisation to enable energy security, growth, and long-term sustainability to the benefit of South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.

Sunday Independent