City workers carry out the electrification process in Jim se Bos informal settlement in Philippi. Picture: Supplied
Cape Town - Thousands of residents living in Khayelitsha and Philippi are expected to benefit from the city’s electrification project.

The city said the project had kicked off at the Jim se Bos informal settlement in Philippi, with the first phase connecting 450 households to the electricity grid.

The first phase of the R2.8million project will be completed by the end of March.

Mayco member for energy and climate change Phindile Maxiti said that based on an inspection he did, he was satisfied with the progress thus far and thanked the community for assisting.

“Access to electricity, where it is possible to install, is a game changer, especially for the most vulnerable in our society.

“It enables economic growth and allows small, home-based businesses to operate more efficiently. It enhances safety, reduces the risk of fires, promotes better public health and also creates an improved environment for learners to achieve better academic results since they no longer have to use candlelight to do homework and study for exams.

“We remain committed to improving the lives of our residents in informal settlements. According to the city’s latest report, 97.3% of our households have access to electricity, 98.4% have access to refuse removal and 94.3% have access to sanitation,” Maxiti said.

In Khayelitsha, more than 600 homes in RR Section switched on their lights as a result of the project.

The electrification project will see 3000 dwellings connected to the power grid.

Maxiti said the project, which required informal structures to be relocated to enable the electrification work to proceed, follows a partnership between Prasa, the City and Eskom.

“There are areas in Cape Town which are supplied by the city and areas which are supplied by Eskom. Electrification in city supply areas is above 97%.

“Permanent electricity services cannot be installed in cases where, for instance, residents live under power lines or on railway/road reserves, or where the land is uninhabitable, such as settlements formed on wetlands, floodplains or other water bodies; where residents have settled on privately-owned land; or where no permission exists for the city to install such basic services, among others,” said Maxiti.

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