The Democratic Alliance (DA) has called for urgent intervention to address the grinding economic crisis facing South Africa.

With the official unemployment rate on the rise, persistently low growth rates and the parlous state of state-owned enterprises – the official opposition said the state of the economy was the main threat to the country’s future.

The party explained that unemployment post 1994 had reached a record high, breaching the sobering 10-million mark for the first time.

The DA’s highest decision-making body, the federal executive, met in Johannesburg this weekend to discuss what needs to be done. Among other things, it resolved to push for Eskom to be split into two companies and for one to be partly privatised. Government, however, plans to split the utility into three separate entities.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane said Eskom must be part privatised.

“Starting with the biggest threat to our economy, Eskom, not only does it threaten energy production but its fiscal sustainability is concerning. We will continue the fight that Eskom must be split into two entities.”

The party also wants IPPs to come on board by passing the Independent Electricity Management (IEMA) Bill.

Maimane also took aim at President Cyril Ramaphosa in a statement.

“There is no sign of any ‘green shoots’ in the economy, and instead of halting the decline, it appears Cyril Ramaphosa is exacerbating it. His open support for economically damaging policies such as expropriation without compensation, the national minimum wage, the national health insurance, and the Eskom monopoly – among many others – is proof that when it comes to the test, Cyril Ramaphosa is loyal to the ANC above all else.”