City Power contractors attacked by Alexandra residents while repairing a faulty cable



Published Jun 5, 2024


City Power contractors were attacked, and one was left badly injured, after a group of residents in Alexandra assaulted them while they were repairing a faulty cable that had caused a power outage.

The contractors were ambushed on Tuesday at corner Ruth and 13th Avenue by an angry mob.

“The group pelted stones, injuring one of the contractors and landing him in hospital. Other technicians managed to escape unharmed, but their tool-boxes were stolen in the process. Cables and joints that were going to be used for the repairs were also taken,” said City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena.

He said City Power was forced to immediately pull out all of its resources from the township over safety concerns.

“By this morning (Wednesday), only skeletal service was provided as the technicians are scared to respond to Alexandra outages.”

Mangena added that a case has been reported to the police.

"We strongly condemn these violent attacks on our contractors and technicians who were assigned to address the very same outage concern that residents are complaining about. It's deeply disappointing that our attempts to restore supply were met with such brute violence,“ said City Power CEO, Tshifularo Mashava.

Mashava emphasised that City Power will not hesitate to permanently withdraw its employees and contractors from areas where their safety is compromised.

"We urge councillors and community leaders in the area to speak to their fellow residents to refrain from such counter productive acts, because if this continues unabated, we will be left with no choice but to completely halt our services in order to protect lives. We will be engaging the community leadership and councillors to express our concerns and request their intervention," Mashava added.

Mangena said the entity has capacity challenges in Alexandra due to multiple faults and overloading of the network.

“This risky situation has forced us to embark on load rotation to alleviate the pressures on the system.The 20th avenue distributor has been off due to multiple cable faults and the outage is affecting customers in Alexandra from 12th avenue to 20th avenue between Roosevelt and Hofmeyer Streets,’’ he added.

He said the outage will remain prolonged due to the onslaught attack on the contractors.

“City Power will only allow its full complement of employees and contractors to return to site when it deems it safe,” he concluded.

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