Cable theft suspects. File picture.
Cable theft suspects. File picture.

Eerste River residents band together with police, Eskom to tackle cable thieves

By Nomalanga Tshuma Time of article published Jul 21, 2021

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CapeTown - Eerste River communities that have been battling to stamp out the destruction of their electrical infrastructure have banded together with Eskom and the police to do battle with criminals.

Community stakeholders in Eerste River say they are now more than ready to deal with the vandals who have been targeting their electricity infrastructure in search of cables and other items to pawn.

Kleinvlei councillor Kariena Mare said although residents recently had their electricity problems resolved, the community still had to battle against the people who were destroying their electricity boxes and causing the problems in the first place.

“We are battling to stamp out the destruction of our electricity infrastructure. Over the past three months, things have taken a turn for the worst, and at one point we had three electricity boxes damaged.

“I think as a community we know that the people doing things are the drug users and the gangsters who are after the cables. So to address our electricity issues, I think we need to first deal with the root cause of the problem, otherwise it will always be a continuous problem.”

Rosedale councillor Sharlaine Oerson said: “We have managed to get the areas that were without electricity back online for the time being. However, to work towards a more efficient solution, we will be meeting as community stakeholders with police and the City’s Cable Theft Unit and Eskom to discuss how best we can tackle the issues at hand, and I think that’s the best way we can address the issues we have been struggling with for some time.”

Meanwhile, Eskom has once again appealed to communities and residents to work together with the police and law enforcement to address the continual vandalism of its kiosks, resulting in residents being without electricity for long periods.

In a statement, Eskom said it had seen a surge in theft and vandalism of equipment over the past few weeks, with illegal connections, cable theft and vandalism in its supply areas in and around Cape Town resulting in lengthy power outages in affected communities that have left customers frustrated.

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