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By Kyle Zeeman

Digital News Editor

‘Lying lifeless on the roof with wires in his hands’ – 3 killed by illegal connections

Eastern Cape police reported three incidents in Gqeberha from Saturday to Sunday morning.

South Africa’s illegal connections scourge has led to the death of three people in one city in just over 24 hours.

Eastern Cape police reported three incidents in Gqeberha from Saturday to Sunday morning.

The first, just after 2 am in Greenbushes, saw a man suspected of trying to make an illegal connection shocked to death.

READ MORE: Eskom will not pay you R5k to report illegal connections

Neighbours reportedly found him lying dead on the roof.

“The occupant of the main house in Couta Street, Kuyga, Greenbushes, heard the dogs barking and went outside to investigate when she found the tenant of the flatlet lying lifeless on the roof with wires in his hands. It is suspected that the 26-year-old man was attempting to connect electricity to his flatlet when he was electrocuted.

“An inquest docket was opened and is being investigated by Saps Kabega Park.” police spokesperson Captain Andre Beetge said.

Stepping and crouching to death

Two others were killed in what appeared to be accidents with seemingly exposed connections.

On Saturday evening, a 24-year-old female in Rabie Village, Wells Estate, allegedly touched an illegal connection while crouching and died from being electrocuted.

At around 04:30 the next morning a group were walking through an open space in Auburn Street, Booysens Park, when an 18-year-old girl allegedly stepped on an illegal connection and was electrocuted to death.

ALSO READ: Eskom’s stolen electricity is more than the deficit which results in load shedding

“One of the male friends attempted to help her, but he was also shocked. He moved away,” Beetge added.

Their deaths are also under investigation.

Nearly a third of power ‘stolen’

Illegal connections have led to energy crises across the country, with residents in Tshwane recently taking to the streets to protest illegal connections.

Watch a security officer explain what happened when they tried to disconnect illegal connections

Power utility Eskom revealed in February that about 30% of its generating capacity is stolen or has not been paid for.

The 7 500MW lost is more than the 5 000MW that would cause load shedding to kick in.

“Electricity theft causes outages and undermines Eskom in its mission to provide safe and reliable electricity, while depriving residents and businesses of electricity,” it said.