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MEDIA RELEASE: George Municipality clamps down on electricity illegal connections

Issued by George Municipality, 6 April 2022

The fight against illegal connections is yielding positive results as the George Municipality’s Electro-Technical Department removed 1085 illegal power connections at informal settlements in George in February 2022.

This was confirmed in a report tabled at the Electrotechnical Services Committee meeting on Tuesday, 05 April 2022. The number of informal settlements in George is estimated at 8000, of which 5981 informal settlements shared between Thembalethu and Moeggeploeg have illegal and unsafe electricity connections.

Mr Bongani Mandla, director for Electrotechnical Services emphasized that illegal power connections, no matter how small or innocent-looking, are dangerous and are certainly a death trap.

Mandla assured that his department will continue with the campaign of removing the illegal connections and educating the public about the dangers of illegal power connections. “We are working with the George Municipality’s communications department to assist us with sharing educational information about the dangers of illegal connections,” Mandla said.

“In the next month, we are distributing 15 000 flyers in Afrikaans, English and Isi-Xhosa to the areas most affected by illegal connections, as part of our awareness campaign on illegal connections,” he said. “These flyers comprise information about the nature of the illegal connection, the dangers associated with illegal connections, financial implications, and useful information when one wants to report illegal connections as well as information on a reward attached to reporting illegal connection upon successful prosecution.”

Members of the public may report illegal connections to the George Municipality on 044 801 9222/044 803 9222 or 044 801 6300 (a/h). Report people who make illegal connections to 0860 044 044, SAPS 10111 or the South African Police Service (SAPS) to 10111.  The George Municipality offers R 2500 reward for information that leads to the successful conviction of electrical theft and/or vandalism in a court of law. The witness will have to go on record to the authorities, giving his/her name and contact details to testify, but his/her identity will be protected. Report to 0860 044 044 to be eligible for the reward.