New Nersa chair Thembani Bukula.
Gallo Images / Sowetan / Antonio Muchave
- Cabinet approved the appointment of engineer and energy analyst Thembani Bukula as chairperson of the National Energy Regulator of South Africa.
- Bukula is an oft-cited energy analyst and has over 25 years’ experience as an engineer.
- Apart from serving at Nersa between 2005 and 2016, he served as independent non-executive director of Mahube Infrastructure and CEO of Power X.
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Cabinet announced that it approved the appointment of Thembani Bukula as chair of the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) amid ructions with Eskom over its tariff applications.
Cabinet announced the appointment in a statement in its latest meeting, which took place on Wednesday.
Along with Bukula’s appointment as Nersa chair, Cabinet approved the appointment of Zandile Mpungose as deputy chair.
Bukula is an oft-cited energy analyst and has over 25 years’ experience as an engineer. He has served as independent non-executive director of Mahube Infrastructure and CEO of Power X.
He served Nersa as a member responsible for electricity regulation between 2005 and 2016.
The appointment comes off the back of an antagonistic relationship between the regulator and Eskom over the power utility’s tariff increase applications.
The power utility and Nersa took Eskom to court in July to have the 9.6% tariff increase that Eskom was awarded overturned, saying the regulator arrived at “financially impossible” conclusions when awarding the tariff.
READ | Nersa greenlights first two private 100MW generation projects
Later in that month, Eskom applied to Nersa for a 32.66% tariff increase from April to allow it to fund power purchases in line with President Cyril Ramaphosa’s national power plan.
Other appointees approved by Cabinet to join Nersa were Precious Sibiya, Thembeka Semane and Fungai Sibanda, who was reappointed to the board.
Cabinet also approved the appointment of Titus Mathe as the CEO of the South African National Energy Development Institute.
All appointments approved by Cabinet are subject to the verification of qualifications and clearance procedures.
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