City Power needs to be more transparent

I would like to refer you to the excellent article which appeared on 17 March in the Roodepoort Northsider titled Why we have no power.

This article covered the various reasons why we have ‘power outages’ in our area, ie:

• bad weather

• cable theft

• illegal connections

• aged infrastructure

• lack of upgrading and maintenance

The article gave a welcome transparent view and information-sharing, which was sorely required up to now . However, the vicious spiral of frequent power interruptions has continued unrelentingly.

What is obviously missing is some accountability, responsibility and courage for City Power, the police and the civil authorities to do something concrete to reverse and improve the situation. If the government is unable and unwilling to tackle the issue of cable theft, then solutions should be sought from other quarters.

We cannot be expected to continue thinking that this and other appalling security/ crime situations are actually acceptable and to be regarded as part of life in our area and elsewhere in the country.

For example, the technical colleges in our country can take up the challenge and ask their students to come up with credible and fresh, out-of-the-box solutions to these problems.

The most outstanding contributions to such a case study should then be given to government and applied strictly, so hopefully we will get some meaningful action with meaningful results.

On Sunday, 16 July, the greater part of Roodepoort and surrounding areas experienced a 10-hour power failure. Social media went crazy with very angry residents demanding answers from City Power. Eventually a reply was posted on Twitter that the outage in fact was a ‘scheduled outage’.

This was an outage that was not made known to residents. Many a planned Sunday function was ruined and many rude curses were aimed at City Power. People are suspecting that excuses for planned outages, tripped substations and cable problems are just load-shedding in a new guise. Why are these events taking place so often? Why are substations tripping all the time? If we know, we must surely fix them.

Is it not time for City Power to address the issue in a transparent manner and take the bull by the horns? They can start by openly accounting in the media for the reasons for all interruptions by way of apologising to their clients.


Peter Mammous

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