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Cable theft costs Rand West City Local Municipality R10 million annually

by Rebone Motlhokwane

Rand West City Local Municipality spends R10 million annually on cables. Picture: Supplied

The Rand West City Local Municipality says it is forced to spend approximately R10 million on average per year, to replace stolen cable. The municipality claims that it experiences around three to ten cases of cable theft daily, which is costly to the Municipality.

Francois Kuhn, an electrical official, says that theft impacts the quality of infrastructure. “The theft of cables has a very adverse effect on the overall maintenance plans that the municipality has to execute,” he said, “regular maintenance cannot be attended to as stolen cables and infrastructure require immediate attention on a daily basis,” said Kuhn.

Sizile Zondo, a community member who lives in Mohlakeng, said that it makes her very emotional when she thinks about cable theft. “I do not feel good about it,” she said, “when there is no electricity I have to go outside and start a fire using wood or charcoal for me to cook,” said Zondo.

Another resident, Annah Sepotokele, called on the municipality and the police to act and prevent the ongoing cable theft in their area. “We are really tired of cable theft because it takes long for the municipality to fix when thieves have stolen cables,” she said. “In fact, everything comes to a standstill”.

To prevent cable theft Kuhn said the municipality has placed security guards at the sites where cables are frequently stolen and security systems with armed response have been installed at a number of substations

The SAPS and one private security company that have installed close-circuit TV cameras at their own cost, but unfortunately it only helps to a certain extent.


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