Power theft: PMB homes left in the dark

2010-04-16 00:00


ILLEGAL electricity connections, allegedly by residents of an informal settlement, has left a number of residents in a Pietermaritzburg suburb without power.

An affected resident, Indasen Pillay (41), said there are about five houses affected in Laburnum Road, Willowton. It is alleged that the theft of electricity by Jika Joe informal settlement residents is out of control in the area.

“The electricity went off in my house on Tuesday at about 7.30 pm, but it returned at about 11 pm. It went off again at 7.30 am [on Wednesday] until now,” he said early yesterday evening.

“When we reported this to the municipality, we were told that the problem is being attended to. But, as the problem continued, they told us that they are disconnecting the power from the informal settlement. But later they said municipal workers were on strike,” said Pillay, who was forced to throw away food from his fridge.

Msunduzi Municipality public safety spokesman Kwenza Khumalo said the power fai­lures were caused by illegal connections. “Yesterday, we went out with the police and our security personnel to disconnect electricity at the squatter camp.

“One of our security officers was wounded when he was hit with a brick during a confrontation with [residents],” said Khumalo.

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