Meet Eskom COO Jan Oberholzer: A man in SA’s power seat that is hot

Meet Eskom COO Jan Oberholzer: A man in SA’s power seat that is hot

JOHANNESBURG — With news that Eskom is anticipating to load shed in early January once more, it would appear that the embattled power provider’s dark times are far from over. The business is saddled with huge financial obligation and incredibly dirty, outdated coal plant technology. It’s a financial tragedy waiting to take place. But because SA is full of monopolies (and also the ANC federal government is intent on perpetuating them) South Africans sit with a problem that is massive their fingers which has been needlessly self-created. But, you can find a lot more than capable individuals inside Eskom in addition to COO Jan Oberholzer seems to have a feeling of rationality pertaining to the continuing future of the state-owned utility company. In this meeting, EE writers’ Chris Yelland and Roger Lilly swept up with him. – Gareth van Zyl

By Chris Yelland and Roger Lilley*

A energizing openness by Eskom’s brand new administration has been demonstrated in a special meeting with Eskom COO Mr Jan Oberholzer by EE writers. The interview observed dramatic developments within the operations of Eskom in 2010, such as the decrease within the utility’s generation plant performance, shortages of coal at energy channels in Mpumalanga, the return of phase 2 (2,000 MW) load that is shedding rolling blackouts around the world for per week ahead of the xmas festive season, while the statement because of the COO of a nine-point intend to deal with the functional dilemmas.

Mr Oberholzer, please are you able to explain the functions and lines of authority involving the Eskom CEO, COO, CFO along with other Eskom Exco users? Whom dating app for Vietnamese states to who?

Eskom’s structure that is new constructed on three pillars: strategy, finance and operations. Generally speaking, CEO Phakamani Hadebe could be the face of Eskom, in charge of strategy, appropriate and business affairs, hr and reputation administration. CFO Calib Cassim accounts for the amount of money, liquidity, finance, loans, treasury, opportunities, real-estate, various help solutions and general monetary control. As COO, i will be in charge of all Eskom’s operations: generation, transmission and circulation of electricity, main power, coal and water, team money (which include new-build jobs), Rotek Industries, Eskom Enterprises, Eskom Research, Testing & Development (RT&D), danger and sustainability, amongst others. Eskom has ready a brand new exco organogram, and I also will share this with you whenever finalised.

Which are the biggest problems Eskom that is currently facing dilemmas are you currently in charge of, and just just exactly just what keeps you awake through the night?

The largest problems dealing with Eskom are: financial obligation, liquidity and monetary sustainability, individuals problems – with individuals being our most critical asset, ensuring sufficient coal materials, decreasing generation plant performance and accessibility – triggered by planned upkeep outages, unplanned breakdowns and plant operating with reduced production than ranked, and fast-rising municipal and Soweto arrear debt. From my place, my best issues will be the generation that is poor performance, ensuring sufficient coal materials when confronted with high export rates, additionally the danger of rainfall at the moment. Although we involve some 45GW of installed generation ability at our disposal, we actually have actually significantly less than 30GW of available capacity – plus the country’s load is much more than 30GW. Therefore, for the present time, we’re grateful for the season that is festive need is paid down. About the individuals problems, my issues are to make certain accountability by line supervisors, and having just the right people who have just the right mixture of abilities within the place that is right especially within generation.

Some will say the functional issues at Eskom could be addressed provided adequate work, money and time, but that the economic and ecological problems presently facing Eskom are intractable. Can you concur?

Yes, i really do concur that we have the money and the right people, we can resolve the operational issues – no doubt about that if we are diligent, and. But running in a world of serious economic constraints, massive financial obligation and quickly increasing municipal and also worldwide arear financial obligation is a huge challenge, therefore the CFO could be better positioned to comment further with this. On ecological sustainability, you can find huge problems concerning the burning of coal. Can we simply trade our solution for the situation that is current? No, we believe we are going to need to do some plain things really differently to your means they are done before – structurally, financially and environmentally.

Can you think Eskom are came back to its previous glory, or is this a pipe-dream that is backward looking the basically changed and changing world of power?

No, I don’t think days gone by may be recaptured with Eskom retaining its present kind being a vertically integrated monopoly. Can Eskom enhance its reputation, confidence and performance? Yes, i really believe we could, but we now have plenty of strive to do in order to accomplish this, including training and abilities development. The entire world changed dramatically since those previous times, and you will find pressures for improvement in the vitality sector. The existing framework as a vertically incorporated company and solitary electricity customer is almost certainly not the structure that is best and business design money for hard times, and stress from industry w209
ill force Eskom to alter to match the brand new realities. Our president, Mr Jabu Mabuza, has recently stated that the Eskom operations of generation, transmission and circulation might in future be ring-fenced and addressed as independent devices with a company focus, with line supervisors empowered to really make the necessary choices for success, and held in charge of the outcomes.