While ESKOM told the public to brace themselves for further loadshedding, Tembisa sub power station has been gutted by fire.

The cause of the fire is yet to be known as at the time of publishing.

However, Eskom CEO Phakamani Hadebe said load shedding could end within the next six months.

Speaking on Radio 702 on Tuesday, Hadebe explained: “It will be something that we will be working on to conclude at least for six months or so. After six months, it [load shedding] will be far less than where we are”.

His comments come after Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan earlier said at a press briefing that Eskom would be out of the woods in the next year or two.

Hadebe has also defended government’s decision to bring in external engineers from Italy to assist the beleaguered power utility with its challenges.

Hadebe said there was nothing wrong with government bringing in additional experts to help Eskom with maintenance.

“I think this [load shedding] is a challenge and everyone is aware of the impact it will have on the South African economy, and for that we are apologising. There’s nothing wrong about government deciding to bring in additional experts to come and assist in moving this forward. And I think it will be very naive of us to assume that we are the only ones who can solve this.”

In February, Gordhan announced in Parliament that engineers from Italian energy company Enel would assist Eskom with investigating the structural challenges facing the power producer.

Hadebe said the biggest challenge Eskom faced was the deteriorating state of its power stations due a lack of maintenance over the years.

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While ESKOM told the public to brace themselves for further loadshedding, Tembisa sub power station has been gutted by fire. The cause of the fire is yet to be known as at the time of publishing. However, Eskom CEO Phakamani Hadebe said load shedding could end within the next six months. Speaking...