CAPE TOWN – The electricity company Eskom in South Africa said Friday that access to electricity has improved from 36 percent in 1994 to 90 percent so far.
Eskom said in 1994, at the "dawn of democracy", only 36 percent of the country had access to electricity, with 12 percent national electrification. To date, the program is lagging behind with fewer than 300,000 un-electrified homes in its supply area, and this figure precludes growth and informal settlements.
About 90 percent of South Africans have access to electricity and 80 percent of rural areas have been electrified through the integrated national electrification program.
According to the statement, most of the electrification program was implemented in more remote and deep-lying rural areas, where the construction of the network infrastructure was a challenge, on difficult terrain and therefore expensive. To date, Eskom has electrified more than five million households, with plans to electrify 180,000 households per year for the next three years.
"Eskom is just as much a part of South Africa's heritage as our power lines and power plants are part of the South African landscape, but it goes beyond that, our systems, processes, skills and expertise needed to run the network , are also part of a shared heritage, "said the chief executive of Eskom, Phakamani Hadebe.
"This year's heritage day is special because it is the centenary of the centenary celebration of Nelson Mandela, a man who has taught us the importance of our rich and varied cultural heritage, which can help build our nation," he said.
Hadebe added: "As an organization that has been the cornerstone of the South African economy, we remain proud of our heritage of nurturing the nation, and we are always aware that electricity is an essential factor for the economy, encourages education, social cohesion and individual and collective ambitions, which is why we take this commitment to universal access seriously ".
– African News Agency (ANA)