Sunday, February 11, 2024

South Africa's Stage 6 electricity blackouts too much for MultiChoice and M-Net's Big Brother Mzansi that's back on DStv after suffering 12 hour transmission break due to Eskom load shedding.

by Thinus Ferreira

After a break of almost 12 hours, the latest season of Big Brother Mzansi flickered back on TV sets on Sunday morning just after 11:00 after a transmission blackout because of South Africa's Stage 6 electricity blackouts.

Eskom's latest round of debilitating Stage 6 load shedding which hit South Africa on Saturday morning, and was downgraded to Stage 5 on Sunday afternoon, was so severe that even the backup emergency power in place for use by the Red Pepper Pictures produced show for MultiChoice and M-Net's Mzansi Magic TV channel couldn't cope anymore and failed.

The loss of electricity led to a break in transmission from the Big Brother Mzansi studio in Johannesburg which is in 4th season under the Big Brother Mzansi moniker and is the 10th season overall of Big Brother done by M-Net in South Africa according to the Banijay format.

Big Brother Mzansi went off the air on Saturday night around midnight and only managed to be restored almost 12 hours later at 11:45 on Sunday morning. 

According to insiders, despite normal precautionary measures and backup power generation, the weekend's incessant bouts of electricity cuts under Eskom's Stage 6 proved too much for the electricity demands of the camera-filled Red Pepper Pictures reality show. 

A spokesperson told TVwithThinus on Sunday that Mzansi Magic was immediately aware of the loss in transmission on DStv's channel 198.

"Due to Stage 6 load shedding, backup power generation was affected and the production team worked hard to get more backup generators for the show to resume transmission."

"We would like to assure viewers that extra security measures were put in place to ensure that housemates are safe and they remained under the watchful eye of Big Brother."