People work on repairing the Wapadrand substation. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)
People work on repairing the Wapadrand substation. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)

Tshwane admits missing deadlines to repair Wapadrand substation

By Rapula Moatshe Time of article published Jul 26, 2021

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Pretoria - Tshwane Executive Mayor Randall Williams has conceded that the municipality failed to meet numerous deadlines to repair the Wapadrand electricity substation which went up in flames more than a week ago.

The incident resulted in power outages for Pretoria east residents, leaving them in the dark for a week.

On Friday evening, Williams went to inspect work done at the substation and apologised to residents for failing to restore power to their homes.

“We are still busy completing the job at the Wapadrand substation. We understand your frustration that once again we have missed the deadline that we have set for ourselves.” He said the City finished the jointing of the cabling and laying of the cable on Friday afternoon. However, after the testing and identification of the cables it was picked up that there were faults on two cables.

“Again we lost quite a large amount of time in identifying which two cables had the faults,” Williams said.

He said the City managed to identify the faults and do the jointing of the damaged cables.

“Once we have done that we should start testing the whole system to see if it is ready to be energised so that we can finally have electricity restored to the homes. We apologise like we have been apologising so many times during the week for missing deadline after deadline,”Williams said.

On Saturday, the MMC for Utility Services, Phillip Nel, announced that power had been restored in most areas in Pretoria east and only isolated outages were identified.

Nel said: “I won’t say I am pleased to announce that most areas that have been without power are back on now. I know this has been a very difficult time for residents.

“Following a rather long testing period power was restored in phases to all the secondary sub-stations and suburbs from 2.30am to about 4.30am.”

He said the City was aware of small pockets that didn’t yet have power.

“Often with large outages, there are smaller trips within the area that we will need help identifying. Residents are encouraged to report these faults to the municipality and also to keep their ward councillors informed.”

Meanwhile, the ANC in Tshwane claimed that the Wapadrand sub-station has been experiencing similar problems for the past three years.

“The ANC is aware that indeed the problem of the blowing up of the substation happens almost in the middle of winter each year since 2018 to date,” the party said.

Pretoria News

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