Avatar photo

By Cheryl Kahla

Content Strategist

Taxi violence: Eskom suspends services in affected areas in Western Cape

Eskom warns of a 'significant delay in electricity restoration efforts' until it's safe for personnel to return.

Eskom suspended services in parts of the Western Cape due to taxi violence and “threats to the safety of staff in Eskom-branded vehicles”.

Taxi violence in Western Cape

Eskom said it will be taking action after a vehicle was pelted with rocks and set alight in Philippi on Friday morning.

eskom taxi violence
Image: Supplied

As a result, Eskom operators were forced to evacuate the areas “until it was safe to return”.

As per Eskom, the affected areas are:

  • Boystown,
  • Crossroads,
  • Luzuko,
  • Mandalay,
  • Marcus Garvey, and
  • Philippi.

The power utility said in a statement: “Unfortunately, this means there will be a significant delay in electricity restoration efforts and customers may experience prolonged durations without electricity”.

Investigation continues

The power utility will be working closely with local authorities to monitor resident- and taxi violence, and to ensure the safety of Eskom personnel once they resume work.

Eskom said it strongly condemns the harassment and violent behaviour, and suspended services in the affected areas as their personnel’s safety “remains the highest priority”.

One Philippi resident, Yandisa, said they have been without electricity for hours, adding:

“People are robbed, [there’s ] no police visibility, we need help in Philippi East”

ALSO READ: Should we be worried about Eskom’s management of Koeberg?

Cele’s ‘Street Imbizo

Saps’ slow service delivery

Meanwhile Police Minister Bheki Cele is visiting communities in the Western Cape after five people were gunned down in the Endlovini informal settlement this week.

He engaged with residents, who ‘did not hold back when putting forward their policing concerns’, such as the slow responses of police officers to their crime emergencies.

Other community members cited the lack of basic services such as electricity as contributors to the high crime in the area

Saps to ‘shape up or ship out’

Cele placed the blame on SA Police Service (Saps) stations Cele called for the SAPS in the stations and urged officers to “shape up or ship out”.

“We will not tolerate a culture of non-delivery when it comes to servicing communities, at the same time the problems raised here cut across many other departments even the local municipality.

“It is a fact that dark streets and alleyways without streetlights and houses without numbers impede policing.

“This is why local government and the SAPS should, and must, work urgently to improve this situation. Resources must be combined to better service these areas”, Cele said.

NOW READ: Cele says he has no plans of resigning but will step down if Ramaphosa asks

Compiled by Cheryl Kahla.

Read more on these topics

Bheki Cele Eskom Rolling blackouts Western Cape