Alex residents pay up to R2000 for illegal power connections

Alexandra residents took to the streets this week to prevent City Power, JMPD and police from entering the River Park and London Road areas to disconnect illegal cables.

JMPD officers and City Power officials conducted an illegal electricity connection operation in Alexandra on 21 September 2021. All exit streets were then closed off by protesting residents with burning tyres and big stones. Picture: JMPD.

JOHANNESBURG - Details have emerged of how much the illegal connectors are charging to connect residents with power in Alexandra.

City Power on Wednesday said the residents paid anything from R500,00 to R2000,00 a month just to connect to the nearest connection points.

Illegal connectors have also vandalised streetlights in areas that include London Road, and Vasco Da Gama.

The power utility said apart from the money lost to the illegal connections, lives had also been lost due to electrocution caused by exposed wires.

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Alexandra residents took to the streets this week to prevent City Power, JMPD and police from entering the River Park and London Road areas to disconnect illegal cables.

This was not the first time residents in the area have protested against the disconnection attempts by City Power officials.

Residents in Alexandra have raised concerns about when they will get proper electricity to their homes.

City Power said a number of people had illegally occupied a block of flats belonging to the provincial government, illegally connecting to the power grid.

The utility said for the city to electrify the area, it must get certification from the human settlements department.

Spokesperson Isaac Mangena: “There are proper channels to follow if they want electricity, one of those is to basically petition council to bring their case across.”

Mangena said the utility was committed to electrify the township as soon as the appropriate department gave them permission.

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