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Macassar in dark again after thugs hit Eskom infrastructure in wake of sub station vandalisation

Macassar remains hardest hit by power outages, Eskom blames vandalism. Picture Leon Lestrade/ African News Agency/ANA.

Macassar remains hardest hit by power outages, Eskom blames vandalism. Picture Leon Lestrade/ African News Agency/ANA.

Published May 29, 2023


Cape Town – Less than a week after a substation was vandalised leaving a large part of Macassar without electricity, criminals again vandalised Eskom infrastructure, this time leaving the Sandvlei community in Macassar in the dark.

Eskom on Monday said that this was another cable theft and vandalism incident that has left residents in Macassar without electricity supply, with the Oklahoma substation also vandalised recently.

“Eskom is aware of the problem and will dispatch operators to the site as soon as possible,” the power utility said.

In a separate incident a cable fault has affected the electricity supply in Sitari. “Eskom operators are busy with fault-finding to determine the cause of the fault. Unfortunately, the estimated time for electricity restoration has not yet been determined,” Eskom said.

Last week, the “Cape Times” reported that Macassar was “the darkest community” in the province, with prolonged electricity outages and community leaders blaming this on failing Eskom infrastructure.

Their frustration pushed ward councillor Peter Helfrich to call on President Cyril Ramaphosa for intervention in an open letter.

“Ward 109 is one of the darkest places to live in South Africa.

“When these ongoing prolonged power outages occur, the ward feels as if it becomes almost as dark as the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.

“No residents should have to live like this. Residents are gatvol and are demanding urgent action from Eskom and the president.

“This community on some days only has power for a few hours and on other days has no electricity at all.

“These power outages are a direct result of failing Eskom infrastructure or a failure by Eskom to protect the infrastructure from vandals in certain hot spots.

“I have tried my level best to take up these issues with Eskom but have had no success, therefore my letter for intervention from the president. All I can say is, no person deserves to live like this,” said Helfrich.

Eskom has appealed to members of the public to report electricity theft including illegal connections, tampering, cable theft and vandalism of infrastructure.

Members of the public can anonymously report incidents by contacting the Eskom Toll-Free Crime Hotline 0800 11 27 22 or the local SAPS.

Cape Times