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Kwa-Thema residents welcome legal electricity

The project will see over 700 households receive electricity before the end of the year.

Athalia Lebotsa owner of a newly electrified house in Kwa-Thema extension 3 flanked by MMC Aubrey Nxumalo on the left and Executive Mayor Mondli Gungubele on the right.

JOHANNESBURG - Statistics South Africa says over 12.4 million South African households have electricity but of these, only 85 percent are connected to the electricity grid while 11 percent are using illegal connections.

In a bid to stamp out the need for illegal electricity connections, the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality has initiated a project to bring power to Kwa-Thema extension 3.

On Wednesday Ekurhuleni Executive Mayor Mondli Gungubele and Member of Mayoral Committee for Water and Energy Aubrey Nxumalo launched the electrification project.

The project will see over 700 households being connected before the end of the year.

Nxumalo said "The first phase saw 176 houses connected at the end of June 2013. A total of 152 households in Waag and 146 houses in Flora Park now have access to electricity."

"The second phase of this project will commence at the beginning of December when 418 stands in Section D will be connected," he continued.

Nxumalo adds a financial injection of R11 million was set aside to carry out this project in 2011 and an amount of R6.9 million has since been utilised.

The remaining capital to conclude the project in phase two is R4.1 million.

Athalia Lebotsa 41, from Flora Park who resides with her husband and their eight-year- old son, said when she first moved in, life was very hard because they were pressured into connecting illegally.

"We would always end up on the wrong side of the law and with our ward councillor who would often send in the Red Ants to disconnect power," she shyly admitted.

"But immediately after they left, we would re-connect and that hit hard on our pockets as it meant purchasing new electrical cords every time."

Nxumalo urged the community of Kwa-Thema to remain patient as the Metro does its utmost to ensure all residents receive services.