President Cyril Ramaphosa says he was studying the judgment of the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, after it ordered Minister of Electricity Kgosientsho Ramokgopa to exempt schools, hospitals, clinics, and police stations from load shedding by the end of January next year.
The government was taken to court by the UDM and Mmusi Maimane to stop it from implementing load shedding in public schools, health facilities and police stations.
Ramaphosa said he was studying the judgment with the affected departments.
“The Presidency and affected departments note the judgement handed down by the Pretoria High Court on the matter between the UDM, others, and Eskom, others.
“The Presidency is studying the judgement and will, in due course, pronounce on further steps on the matter,” said the presidency.
Maimane said this was a monumental victory against the government to ensure there was a constant supply of electricity in schools and hospitals.
He said there was no need for Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan to appeal an earlier judgment to stop the implementation of load shedding in public schools, healthcare facilities, and police stations.
“While rolling blackouts cost the economy billions of rand—and while South Africans sit in the dark and the economy is in free fall—we are delighted that the judiciary acted in the best interests of the people and held this government to account,” said Bosa.
In its judgment the High Court said Ramokgopa must ensure there is electricity supply in schools, hospitals, and police stations by the end of January next year.
“The Minister of Electricity is ordered to take all reasonable steps by no later than January 31, 2024, whether in conjunction with Eskom and other organs of state or not, to ensure that there shall be be sufficient supply or generation of electricity to prevent any interruption of supply as a result of load shedding,” read part of the judgment.
In May, the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, delivered its judgment that government must exempt hospitals, schools, and police stations from police stations.
But this was appealed by government a month later. The government warned that it would not be possible to implement this decision and could cause a blackout.
The government said the decision of the court would compromise its work to stabilise electricity supply in the country.