City Power urges the public to help combat cable theft

JOBURG-City Power has emphasised the need for the public to become more proactive in tackling cable theft.

City Power has emphasised the need for the public to become more proactive in tackling cable theft.

The power utility has urged the public to assist the municipality by reporting any suspicious activity regarding municipal infrastructure and illegal power connections.

This follows an anonymous tip-off which resulted in two suspects at a Midrand scrap yard being arrested for being in possession of 135kg of stolen copper cables.

Off-cuts of 185mm copper cable were recovered on the back of a bakkie on the premises. The manager of the scrap yard and a driver were arrested and charged for theft, and possession of stolen property.

The scrap metal dealer has subsequently been shut down for buying stolen copper cables and not recording the recovered copper in its register.

The owner of the scrap dealer was also charged with bribery after offering officials on the scene a R10 000 bribe.

The latest bust follows the confiscation of a truck ferrying 40 tonnes of cables worth R5 million earlier this month.

City Power managing director, Sicelo Xulu said he was pleased by this breakthrough.

“We appeal to our consumers and to scrap metal dealers to report any suspicious activity they might witness or any unaccounted for equipment that is being sold at their premises,” he said.

“The fight against cable theft is not solely our fight, but cable theft is a cancer that eats away at the economic fibre of our society. It negatively impacts on steady electricity supply which affects our business, our economy and leads to job losses.”

During the city council’s budget speech, MMC for Finance, Geoffrey Makhubo said investments were being made in a comprehensive system to deal with theft and vandalism as many of the power outages experienced were due to these.

The city council therefore planned to invest in alarm monitoring devices at substations and pylon monitoring alarms, but these have yet to be implemented.

The public can report any incidents relating to cable theft or illegal electricity connections by calling 080 000 3251 or 011 490 7553.

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