News24 Wire
Wire Service
1 minute read
11 Jul 2021
4:49 pm

Gauteng shutdown: Protests disrupt City Power’s response to outages, repairs

News24 Wire

The riots erupted in Johannesburg on Saturday night and by Sunday, shops had been looted, vehicles torched and roads barricaded.

Brunel Engineering electrician Gudani Mutshaeni connects electricity at Ruby Informal Settlement at Florida in Johannesburg, 1 July 2021, to adeveloped sites with services such as water' sanitation, road and stormwater network, electricity connections and solid water containment. MMC Mlungisi Mabaso conducted an oversight visit we relocation of beneficiaries to sites developed through a dialogue between the City and the residents of Rugby Club. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

City Power employees who are working in riot-hit areas of Johannesburg have been recalled, affecting the power utility’s response to callouts for power outages, repairs and maintenance.

“As an entity, priority is always given to the safety of our employees, contractors and the equipment. As such a risk assessment was made this morning and a decision was taken to withdraw our teams in areas hardest hit by riots to protect the lives of our teams, including contractors, and property,” City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena said in a statement on Sunday.

Affected areas include Alexandra, Malvern, Jeppestown, George Goch and parts of the Johannesburg CBD.

The riots erupted in the city on Saturday night and by Sunday, shops had been looted, vehicles torched and roads barricaded. Two men died and several police officers were injured.

Mangena added: “We are monitoring the situation in other areas, including Soweto and Hillbrow, and whenever our people are under threat, we won’t hesitate to take steps to protect them. This decision is for the safety of our teams and will be reviewed so that when the situation improves, we can deploy our teams into those areas.

“We are engaging with law enforcement agencies who are also guiding us on the situation.”