26 January 2021
Staff Reporter/ PretoriaLIVE
Pretoria- MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services Department (EISD) Cllr Mpho Moerane has expressed concern over the increase in the number of electricity cable theft incidents across the City of Johannesburg.
Moerane said, “Since the beginning of January 2021, we have had 170 incidents of cable theft to the value of over R2.2 million.
In December 2020 there were 206 incidents of cable theft.”
Most of these incidents happened during the loadshedding stage 2 that was announced, even though cable theft happens even when the lights are on.
“Between Wednesday last week and Sunday yesterday we had 43 cable theft incidents across the City,” Moerane said.
The MMC has called on law enforcement agencies, the SAPS, JMPD, neighborhood watches, and CPF to join hands with City Power to assist to curb the scourge.
“Forty-one suspects were arrested since July 2020 to date, with two arrested this January and 11 in December.
The arrested suspects are in the hands of the SAPS and the Prosecuting Authority, where we expect that they will get the the sentence that fits the crimes.”
” Since the beginning of the financial year we lost R14.4 million worth of cables. This excludes the cost to the actual repairs work to the infrastructure, and material,” said Moerane.
Moerane bemoaned cable theft saying, “Theft not only costs the City millions in lost revenue, it also inconveniences customers, businesseses especially small business, during a time when the country is going through Covid-19 restrictions.”
Moerane added that as part of its mitigating strategy City Power has been replacing the copper cables with aluminum bundle cables which has no much value to the cable thieves.