Family without power for a month

2015-08-11 06:01

For nearly a month, a Hanover Park family has been left in the dark after they discovered a fault in their electrical supply.

The family has been “living in the Stone age again” after they were forced to prepare food and their daily tasks in the dark, says mother of two Linda Kamalie.

“We realised our circuit breaker was faulty. This happened more than three weeks ago and to date nothing has been done,” she says.

“The first time we noticed it was when we saw sparks flying for the plug box. Ever since then we lost power at home and we have no electricity supply to the house,” she adds.

According to the mother she visited the rent office to lodge a complaint but this proved unfruitful.

“When I got to the rent office I was told they would send the complaint through. A few days later there was a team of workers but they wanted to look at the meter box. We told them that’s not where the problem was,” she says.

This then resulted in a continuous back and forth struggle between Kamalie and the local rent office.

“I went back there last week Wednesday to tell them that the problem has not been fixed. But when I got there, their systems were offline. According to someone working there, it was like that for two weeks already. How are we supposed to get help that way if they can’t even assist us?” she asks.

Since their ordeal started they have approach neighbours for help.

“We have to prepare food over an open fire every night. My pots are pitch black.

“My son came to me the other morning saying he wished he could just take a proper bath again because now we have to boil water every time any of us wants to wash. Even when they do their homework at night it’s a struggle. The candles’ wax drips on their book.

“I am emotionally drained. It’s not a nice feeling,” she says.

She also had to take a week off work to do the family’s laundry.

“It’s a bit of a knock to a person because now you’re at the mercy of everybody around you. Luckily I have neighbours and people around me who concern themselves with me. But it’s still not nice because you still have your pride at the end of the day.”

Benedicta van Minnen, mayoral committee member for human settlements, says a report of tampering was confirmed after an inspection of the distribution board.

“The contractor will be attending to the rewiring of the distribution board today (Friday) and we expect to have the power restored by the end of business today (Friday),” Van Minnen says.

Van Minnen confirms they did receive the complaint on 31 July and it was logged on the municipality’s system.

She also confirms a team was sent to the family’s home on Friday 7 August to inspect the circuit breaker.

According to Van Minnen, the Hanover Park housing office has indeed been offline from Monday 27 July due to cable theft.

“It has been back online since Monday 3 August. The City apologises for any inconvenience caused. Unfortunately this was an unforeseen outage over which we had no control,” she says.

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