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The Standard Transfer Specification (STS) has played a pivotal role in shaping the global landscape for electricity and utility prepayment tokens since its introduction in South Africa in 1993. Today, with over 10 million STS electricity prepaid meters in the country, it has become a cornerstone in the management of electricity and water utilities, ensuring secure and reliable transactions.
The global significance of the STS protocol is underscored by its adoption by over 500 utilities across more than 40 countries worldwide. In South Africa alone, Eskom manages 7 million meters, while municipalities oversee an additional 3 million, highlighting the trust and reliability placed in the STS standard.
However, a critical challenge looms on the horizon for South Africa's electricity utilities in the form of the TID Rollover event. All prepayment meters using STS technology are set to cease electricity dispensing on November 24, 2024. This is due to the TID being referenced to a base date of 1993, and the TID Rollover event will cause the prepayment meters to reject tokens with a TID calculated on the base date, marking them as old tokens.
Commenting on this urgent matter, SALGA Gauteng Chairperson Jongizizwe Dlabathi, emphasised, "The impending TID Rollover event poses a significant challenge to the seamless functioning of our electricity utilities. It is imperative that municipalities take immediate action to manage this event for each prepayment meter. Failing to do so may result in disruptions to service levels, sales, and revenue collection."
Dlabathi further stressed, "The process involved in managing the TID Rollover event requires substantial time, effort, and resource allocation. We urge all municipalities to commence the remedial action process urgently to ensure a smooth transition and mitigate the risks associated with the TID rollover."
As South Africa faces this critical juncture, the Gauteng South African Local Government Association (SALGA) calls upon all municipalities to prioritize the implementation of necessary measures, securing a smooth transition and safeguarding the uninterrupted provision of electricity to end-user customers.
Issued by SALGA