Council acts to stop theft

2013-06-28 00:00

ROBBERS held up Msunduzi security guards at the municipal stores on two nights recently and stole copper cable worth R200 000.

This, along with other thefts, has prompted council to tighten security by installing CCTV cameras in the city hall and at the municipal stores. The decision was taken at the full council sitting yesterday, after it emerged that there had been serious cases of theft and robbery at these premises. The council was told of two armed robbery incidents which occurred on June 16 and 19, where unknown gunmen held municipal security guards hostage and walked out with copper cables worth R200 000.

Municipal insiders suspect that the robbers had inside information, because when the municipal security guards were held hostage they were asked about another consignment of 60 km of copper cables that was recently purchased by council for its electricity infrastructure, but had not yet been delivered. Sources said the robbers arrived in a truck and were prepared to load as much as they could, including the copper cable.

Msunduzi municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi told the council that they were in the process of installing CCTV cameras at the municipal stores and at the city hall because of the theft that had been going on there. He said it was fortunate that the 60 km of copper cable had not yet been delivered, “because if we had done so then we would have lost it to these robbers”, said Nkosi.

He said he had been recently informed that one of the suspects involved in the robbery had been arrested and appeared in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court, but he had been released on bail.

Councillors were very concerned about the level of theft at the stores as well as inside the city hall. It seems that the city hall has become a haven for thieves because earlier this year The Witness reported an incident of copper roof sheeting that was stolen along with a fridge and computers.

Attempts to get police to comment on the robbery incident were unsuccessful.

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