Cape Town - 111025 - After many years in darkness, the City of Cape Town and Eskom have started installing electricity in the Never Never informal settlement in Philippi. Pictured is Sandiswa Velem. Reporter: Sibusiso Nkomo Picture: David Ritchie


Staff Reporter

FOR THE six years that Noncediso Mbashe has lived in the Nevernever informal settlement, the area has been dark at night as residents waited for electricity to be legally installed.

Late yesterday afternoon, a delighted Mbashe said she was waiting to see what Nevernever would look like once the lights went on.

Her neighbour Thabisa Sishumane said: “I’m very excited… and finally it is here. The municipality and Eskom first came here in July when we were protesting. The only light we had came from the streetlights on Sheffield Road.”

Nevernever is situated on a strip between Marcus Garvey and Sheffield Road in Philippi, and is one of the last places in the area to receive lights.

In May this year a fight broke out between Marcus Garvey and Nevernever residents over illegal electricity connections. One man died, another had to be rushed to hospital and two homes were petrol bombed.

At the time, Marcus Garvey was already electrified and some residents there were selling power to the Nevernever settlement.

But yesterday morning, Eskom switched on the power in Nevernever.

An ecstatic Mbashe said it was always dark in the area.

“I’m waiting to see tonight what it’s going to look like with the lights on. It has been six years living here without electricity,” she said.

Elsewhere in the settlement, Linda Mbashe said she had always had a hard time trying to knit and make pillows to sell – because she worked by candlelight.

“Now I’ll buy my pre-paid electricity easily and stop using paraffin,” she said.

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