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Cape Town – Eskom says the increase in electricity theft, especially in high density areas, leads to distribution network overloading and damage to the public’s property and Eskom infrastructure.
The power utility has thus appealed to the public to refrain from illegal connections, meter tampering and buying electricity from illegal syndicates.
According to a statement, the winter season has led to more people “using electricity recklessly, and putting our infrastructure under immense pressure.”
In many cases this results in transformer explosions and other infrastructure being damaged and thus Eskom loses billions of Rand in revenue every year from infrastructure failure caused by network overloading.
“We appeal to all our customers to do the right thing, they must pay for the electricity they are using, ensure that they buy electricity vouchers from legal vendors and stop by-passing and tempering with their meters,” said Eskom Distribution Group Executive Monde Bala.
A statement reads that in the event where Eskom’s assets are damaged or vandalised due to illegal connections, for the safety of the network and the public, Eskom will only replace the transformer once the illegal connections have been removed. Household meters also have to be audited to ensure that it is safe to reconnect.
Eskom continues to work with law enforcement agencies to curb the criminal activities including electricity theft.
Communities are requested to report theft and vandalism of electricity infrastructure and illegal connections to authorities or to Eskom’s crime line on 0800 112 722 or SMS 32211.
Customers are also encouraged to use the MyEskom Customer App to skip the queue, save time and conveniently track service requests.