Power theft: Jika Joe man killed

2016-03-23 09:04

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Pietermaritzburg - Another man has died at the Jika Joe informal settlement while trying to connect electricity wires illegally there.

The man, believed to be in his mid-30s, was electrocuted during the early hours of Tuesday morning.

This is the second reported death this year at Jika Joe, where residents have been killed while making illegal connections.

ER24’s Russell Meiring said two men who had been walking in the bushes spotted the dead body lying in some tall grass near some exposed wires.

“He had sustained serious burn wounds over most of his body,” Meiring said.

Acting Msunduzi municipal spokesperson Nqobile Madonda said the city condemns the “reckless act” of illegally connecting cables to the electricity network.

She said the crime has serious implications to informal dwellers, children living in and around the affected area and civil servants who are required to provide service delivery there.

“This behaviour has resulted in open areas that were once good places for children to play turning into killing zones,” Madonda said.

She said the municipality has established a team of electrical staff and security that on a daily basis removes illegal connections across the city.

“Unfortunately, the number of communities who are illegally connecting electricity is increasing daily and the municipality cannot keep up with the workload,” she said.

The municipality has started providing electricity to informal settlements like Ezinketheni, Swapo and Nhlalakahle. Madonda said Jika Joe will be electrified this year.

She urged residents to call the municipality’s hotline at 0800 001 868 to report illegal connections.

• amil.umraw@witness.co.za

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  power  |  theft

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