South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) party has urged the government to subsidise small businesses and poor households to encourage them use alternative energy sources.
The party’s top body said it was directing government to speed up energy sector reforms “to alleviate the plight of South Africans”.
The country has been in a grip of its biggest power crisis in years, with rolling blackouts of up to six hours a day.
ANC spokesman Pule Mabe said what was required to alleviate the crisis was “a practical programme that says these are the steps, these are the interventions”.
Last week the state-run power firm Eskom introduced rolling blackouts in order to prevent a nationwide blackout.
The power cuts have been exacerbated by industrial action by workers at Eskom – who went on strike last week.
A pay deal has now been reached but Eskom says that doesn’t mean an end to the power cuts as it will take time to clear the backlog of maintenance work.