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CAPE TOWN-- South Africa's State-owned power utility, Eskom, says a majority of the country's municipalities owe it a debt totalling about 13 billion Rand (about 1,045 million US dollars), an increase of more than 40 per cent over last year's debt level.

The power utility told the National Assembly's Standing Committee on Public Accounts that Wednesday that in some cases, Eskom has been forced to take the municipalities to court to recover money owed to it.

The issue of outstanding municipality debt remains one of the main challenges for Eskom. More so as the organization faces serious financial challenges," said Eskom Chairman Jabulane Mabuza.

"The amount owed by municipalities continues to grow with a notable increase from 9.5 billion Rand to 13.5 billion Rand, a 42 per cent escalation between 2017 and 2018. This is of serious concern as it challenges the sustainability of Eskom.

"Investors are concerned that the increasing municipality bad debt will make it difficult for Eskom to service its own debt. They raise questions such as if Eskom cannot collect its debt, how is it going to get its money back.


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