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Sars Cracks Down on Coal-Smuggling Syndicates Worsening Load Shedding Crisis

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Sars Cracks Down on Coal-Smuggling Syndicates Worsening Load Shedding Crisis

A recent operation led by the South African Revenue Service (Sars) in collaboration with other state agencies has succeeded in dismantling a coal-smuggling syndicate that has been a major contributor to South Africa’s ongoing load shedding crisis.

Sars Cracks Down on Coal-Smuggling Syndicates Worsening Load Shedding Crisis

This syndicate’s activities have not only disrupted the nation’s power supply but have also inflicted significant economic losses, estimated at R500 million, on the fiscus.

The success of the operation is attributed to exceptional inter-governmental cooperation and information-sharing under the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure’s Energy Safety & Security Priority Committee.

Cracking Down on Coal Smugglers

The coal-smuggling syndicate operates across multiple provinces, including Gauteng, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, and Limpopo. It involves a network of individuals, including former Eskom employees, who allegedly facilitated procurement fraud and diverted high-grade coal destined for power stations. Instead, this high-grade coal was replaced with lower-grade or sub-standard products, and the diverted coal was either exported or sold to willing buyers. Meanwhile, the inferior coal, often blended with scrap or other materials, was delivered to power stations. This low-grade coal has been a major factor in damaging infrastructure at Eskom power stations, contributing to the power utility’s struggle to generate electricity.

Commendation and Ongoing Fight Against Criminality

Sars Commissioner Edward Kieswetter commended South Africa’s law enforcement agencies for the significant breakthrough in their investigations. He emphasized the importance of all law enforcement agencies continuing their efforts to combat criminality as per their mandates. The operation sent a clear message to those involved in organized crime, warning that they will be pursued and brought to justice.

Tax-Related Offenses

The investigation has revealed possible tax-related offenses, including non-registration for income tax, VAT, and/or PAYE, failure to submit tax returns, under-declaration of income, unwarranted VAT refunds, and false submissions amounting to fraud. Sars has worked tirelessly behind the scenes to uncover these violations and pave the way for a South Africa free from the burden of load shedding.

This operation marks a significant step in addressing the load shedding crisis and curbing activities that have hindered South Africa’s power generation capabilities and economic stability.

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Eskom Loadshedding will continue until 5:00 on Tuesday, as previously announced

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Eskom Loadshedding will continue until 5:00 on Tuesday, as previously announced

Until 05:00 on Tuesday, stage 4 loadshedding will continue. Until further notice, Stage 2 and 4 loadshedding will take place.

Eskom Loadshedding will continue until 5:00 on Tuesday, as previously announced

Monday, 10 July 2023: Stage 4 loadshedding is being implemented until 5:00 a.m. on Tuesday due to increased demand. On Wednesday, Stage 4 loadshedding will be implemented from 14:00 until 05:00, followed by Stage 2 loadshedding from 05:00 to 14:00.

Eskom Loadshedding Today

There will be a daily implementation of this pattern until further notice. A new update will be published if any significant changes are made.

As of now, 14 252MW of generating capacity has been damaged by breakdowns, while 4 118MW of generating capacity has been out of service for planned maintenance.

As of today, Duvha, Hendrina, Kendal, Kriel, Matimba and Medupi power stations have each reactivated a generating unit.

The Arnot and Tutuka power stations each had a generation unit out of service due to a breakdown during the same period.

Tutuka Power Station’s current capacity constraints are due to the delay in resuming two generating units. In order to restore service to the generating units, Eskom teams are working around the clock.

Members of the public are being encouraged to use electricity sparingly and efficiently, and we want to thank the people who do heed the call. During the period between 17:00 and 21:00, please turn off your geysers and pool pumps as this reduces demand, alleviates pressure on the power system, and contributes to fewer stages of load-shedding.

For Further Notice Visit Official Site 

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