Electricity Tampering, Cable Theft in Joe Slovo

The City of Cape Town has dealt with nearly 6 000 cases of electricity tampering and 3 000 cases of cable theft over the past financial year. Joe Slovo in Milnerton has been identified as one of the hotspots.

According to the City of Cape Town, accounts were adjusted to the value of some R164 million after it was found that customers had tampered with infrastructure to get electricity without paying for it. This excludes R31 million worth of contravention notices issued.

The areas with the biggest concentration of this illegal activity are Joe Slovo in Milnerton, Gugulethu, Nyanga, Philippi West and Weltevreden Valley.

Add to cost
This illegal activity has many repercussions for the City as a whole, says the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services and Energy, Councillor Xanthea Limberg. “…we have to account for the increased cost of repairs following vandalism of the infrastructure and the associated overtime to effect repairs, not to mention the actual human resources required to do individual disconnections. This all adds to the cost of supplying electricity.”

According to Limberg, cable theft also “leaves our communities in darkness, puts our residents at risk of electric shock, and allows criminals to operate more easily.”

Report suspicious activities
Illegal connections mainly occur either where there has not been an application for additional connections on a property or when informal settlements are on land where the provision of electricity is not possible due to circumstances such as land ownership challenges, wetlands, and densities.

Residents are encouraged to report suspicious activities near the electricity infrastructure to the City’s Metals Theft Unit on 0800 222 771.  Electricity theft, faulty streetlights and outages can be reported to the City’s call centre on 0860 103 089, by SMS to 31220, or by email to power@capetown.gov.za.




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