The leader of economic freedom, Julius Malema, has accused President Cyril Ramaphosa and his administration of rushing to sign the agreements with the Independent Power Producers on behalf of the business partners of the president and his brother-in-law Patrice Motsepe.
Responding to a question during the President's planned question and answer session at the National Assembly on Wednesday, Malema asked Ramaphosa: "Why did the government rush to sign the independent power producers? [IPP] agreements when Eskom has the available electricity capacity at a lower price.
"If you end up plugging [the electricity generated by] the Independent Power Producers in the national network will not lead to job losses for many Eskom employees or this is just a new cash robbery that benefits your business partners and your brother-in-law Patrice Motsepe, "the EFF leader asked.
Ramaphosa, who remained composed, laughed at the suggestion and said: "For some reason I knew that this was where you went with this line of questions."
However, the visibly shrill behavior of the president was weakened by his woolly reaction.
"Honestly, dear Malema, the cost accounting of the IPPs might seem excessive, but the power generated by these IPPs when they are incorporated into the national grip will be mixed with the power that is being generated. generated by our nuclear power plant, it will also be mixed with the power generated by our coal-fired plants and the prices at the end will not show where the power was produced, "Ramaphosa said.
In my current position [as president] I am well aware that I should never try to promote the interests of family members or people who are close to me and there should never be a suspicion that I or the energy broker Jeff Radebe represents the interests of individuals.
Cyril Ramaphosa, reacts to Julius Malema in parliament
The president regained his composure and was more outspoken when he claimed that the renewable energy was sustainable and that over time the electricity produced by these IPPs would be cheaper than what Eskom produces.
"Most of Eskom's power plants are on their last legs," argued Ramaphosa, "and the real question should be how we make sure that the workers currently working in these power plants will not stay stranded once they have have stopped".
Ramaphosa assured the members of Parliament that he did not represent the interests of a third party.
"In my current position [as president] I am very aware that I should never promote the interests of family members or people who are close to me and there should never be a suspicion that myself or the energy broker Jeff Radebe [who is also Ramaphosa’s brother-in-law] to promote the interests of each individual ", said the president.
Ramaphosa even went so far as to tell the EFF leader that if he had any evidence of an offense, he would have to bring it forward and no longer have to make claims.
This is not the first time that Malema has publicly accused the president of using his position to help his in-laws.
Last month, on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of EFF, Malema issued a powerful warning to the company magnate and the brother-in-law of Ramaphosa, Motsepe, who said he would "do what he did to the Gupta family".
Malema once again emphasized the signing by Radebe in April of the R56 billion contract with 27 independent producers of renewable energy, which are expected to add 2300 MW of electricity to the national grid over the next five years, as a step that benefits Motsepe. .
The EFF leader has so far not revealed any evidence for this, but claimed that the president and his inlaws "caught South Africa".
During the question and answer session, Ramaphosa also made it clear that the land redistribution program was necessary to heal the "historically festering wound of land destruction and enable the transformation and development without which South Africa will experience instability."
The President, however, opposed the EFF's view that the state should be the custodian of the returned country, and said that this "model would frustrate those who want to own their own property".