George Municipality as with many other municipalities is constantly faced with enormous challenges regarding the electrificaiton of new approved housing projects such as Erf 325, Golden Valley, Thembalethu UISP where these housing projects are implemented by the Western Cape Provincial Department of Human Settlements. The financial responsibility for the supply of services such as water, electricity falls to the George Municipality and we are reliant on grant funding to implement. There is currently not sufficient grant funding for the existing approved housing projects.
The immense growth in illegal informal housing in areas such as Allbrick and surrounding areas of Thembalethu, as well as Moeggeploeg and Moeggehuur in Pacaltsdorp has increased the funding deficit, as well as increased damaged to the overall electrical infrastructure due to ongoing illegal connections. The Electrotechnical Department in an effort to formalize the provision of electrical services to informal settlements has recommended the establishment of a multi-disciplinary task team to draft the minimum criteria that will be adhered to for the electrification of informal areas in the future.
The Moeggehuur Electrification forms part of the three Short Term Urgent Electrification projects that were prioritized accordingly by Council (March 2021) in terms of the R800 000 available budget for the 2020/21 Financial year. “Moeggehuur” or Erf 2732 Bluegum Street in Pacaltsdorp was illegally invaded in February 2019. 58 households have been electrified with beneficiaries over 60 and/or disabled addressed first. The cost per structure for electrification is between R10 000 – R13 000.
Executive Mayor Leon Van Wyk visited the site last week to meet with the Consultants, appointed contractors, as well as the Electrotechnical Directorate employees to understand the progress on the project, to review the challenges being experienced as well as to walk part of the area to see the condition of the network installed.
The electrotechnical team together with contractor have been working together with community to resolve any challenge encountered, to ensure the newly connected homes In the photograph from the left are Executive Mayor Leon Van Wyk; Portfolio Councillor for Electrotechnical Services Nosicelo Mbete; Specialized Electrician: George Electrotechnical Services Deshni Charles; VE Reticulation Project Manager, Riaan Naude and Acting Senior Manager: Electrical Services, Eddie Nqumse.