Bela-Bela residents, farmers left without electricity for 9 days

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Properties in the Noodhulp and Roodepoort areas, many of them farms and small holdings, have been left with in the dark following the outage on Sunday 20 February.
Properties in the Noodhulp and Roodepoort areas, many of them farms and small holdings, have been left with in the dark following the outage on Sunday 20 February.
  • Residents of Bela-Bela have been left frustrated following a nine-day power outage.
  • The electricity outage was caused by a damaged transformer.
  • Many of the affected residents are farmers, who have had to make alternative arrangements for water for their livestock.

Residents of Bela-Bela have been without electricity for the last nine days after a transformer was damaged.

Properties in the Noodhulp and Roodepoort areas, including farms and small holdings, have been left in the dark following the outage on Sunday, 20 February.

Municipal spokesperson Kabelo Mosito confirmed the transformer had been damaged.

"Unfortunately, we did not have a spare one to replace it immediately… We have finalised the procurement processes and we are expecting it to be delivered later today. The affected residents will surely have electricity by Thursday, [for] the latest.

"We had, in the past week, secured one transformer in Gauteng - but, upon testing it, it was established that it was not in a good working condition," said Mosito.

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Property owner Antoinette Bosch estimated around 700 properties were without electricity and had been left to make their own arrangements for electricity. Farms, such as Bosch's, have not been able pump water for their livestock, and have had to have water delivered, she said.

Added to this, the household has had to hire a petrol generator to run their freezer for a few hours a day, to prevent their stored food from spoiling.

Resident Deon van Stade told News24 that he had not been able to pump water since the outage on Sunday, forcing him to have water delivered for his cattle.

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He added his frustration over the municipality's communication, saying residents had been told the transformer would be fixed by Monday, and then later by Thursday.

However, he said, they were still waiting for the lights to come back on.

Mosito said the municipality had provided the affected community with a water tanker on a daily basis.

ALSO READ | Man allegedly supplying informal settlement with stolen electricity electrocuted to death

"We also made sure that those with livestock are provided with generator services, so that they can fill their tanks and dams for the animals to be able to drink.

"Lastly, we communicated the progress with the community leadership... they can share it with all those who are affected, so that they know exactly how we're progressing," he said.


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