The Metropolis of Cape City has earmarked R40-million to curb and stop “the scourge of vandalism” of essential vitality infrastructure in communities.
“Incidents of electrical energy infrastructure vandalism proceed to be recorded in all areas within the metro, together with harm to streetlights. Injury to streetlights and to kiosks is among the many most affected… Along with residents, we’re decided to convey an finish to infrastructure vandalism,” town stated in an announcement.
Cape City isn’t the one metropolis battling vandalism of vitality infrastructure. The Metropolis of Johannesburg stated in 2019 it was spending greater than R50-million a yr “in repairs and substitute of broken or stolen infrastructure. This cash may very well be higher spent on service supply initiatives in several elements of town.”
Metropolis Energy, town’s electrical energy utility, had almost 1,650 cable theft and vandalism incidents in 2017/2018, ensuing within the utility shedding R13-million. Within the 2018/2019 monetary yr, there have been 1,865 incidents that price Metropolis Energy R18-million.
In an interview with 702 on 2 Might, Michael Solar, Joburg mayoral committee member for surroundings and infrastructure providers, stated town had spent R100-million up to now yr on defending its infrastructure.
In intensifying safety for vitality infrastructure, Metropolis Energy was working with personal safety contractors, the South African Police Service, the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Division and neighborhood policing boards, Solar stated.
“Within the quick time period, now we have additionally been putting in CCTV cameras and alarm techniques at these hotspots to make sure that now we have a greater safety element round this susceptible infrastructure,” he added.
The Metropolis of Johannesburg has additionally reported rising assaults on safety personnel at their vitality infrastructure. In April, Metropolis Press reported that two safety guards have been killed and one other shot within the head in assaults by alleged cable thieves.
In February, the Metropolis of Cape City recorded R1-million in harm from vandalism and unlawful connections. A lot of the incidents occurred in Hanover Park, Heideveld, Athlone, Manenberg, Atlantis and within the central metropolis areas of Woodstock and alongside Philip Kgosana Drive.
Injury to infrastructure in April triggered energy outages in Gugulethu, Manenberg and Heideveld. Fixing the broken infrastructure price town R160,000. Mayco member for vitality Beverley van Reenen was reported as saying on the time that the price of vandalism and theft of electrical energy cables within the metropolis in February got here to R1-million in 38 reported incidents.
Cape City’s “R40-million injection” will concentrate on “securing essential infrastructure in all communities, boosting safety patrols in hotspot areas and everlasting safety deployments to strategic vitality infrastructure,” town stated in its assertion.
“Enhanced help from members of the general public and metropolis efforts” had led to a downward development in the variety of vandalism, theft and unlawful connection incidents in some areas, it stated. “Nonetheless the general quantity, in addition to recurring incidents within the metropolis, stay excessive.”
Town can even embark on a “vandalism consciousness and training drive” in order that residents have a better understanding of the affect and price of vandalism of their areas. “We name on our communities to face by us and to work with us to assist defend neighborhood infrastructure,” Van Reenen stated.
When Police Minister Bheki Cele tabled the police finances vote a month in the past, he stated job groups could be established to battle cable theft and vitality infrastructure harm.
Cele stated the groups would concentrate on 18 recognized hotspots. “Process groups can even deal with important infrastructure crimes such because the tampering, damaging or destroying of infrastructure associated to vitality, transport, water, sanitation and communication providers. Vital infrastructure crimes can even be on their radar, such because the attacking, damaging or theft of gas pipelines and associated crimes,” stated Cele. DM
Report harm to municipal electrical infrastructure in Cape City: SMS 31220 or e-mail [email protected].