Government & Municipal News
26 June 2020

Tlhabane/ Rustenburg – The Rustenburg Local Municipality (RLM) is concerned about the high number of illegal electricity connections which are now leading to power outages in many areas.  

On Saturday 20 June, a group of Boitekong X13 community members embarked on a protest after they had gone for a week without electricity. On the same day, Tlhabane community members living in Monareng Street also took to the streets to protest a four-day power outage.

The protestors in Tlhabane, who blamed the outages on a malfunctioning transformer, burnt tyres and blocked the road with rocks and tree branches citing 'our frustration with the authorities to timeously attend to our predicament," as the reason for doing so.  

The municipality and power utility Eskom moved quickly to restore electricity in both areas, resulting in an end to the protests.       

The municipality has an ongoing problem with back-yard dwellers in these areas, who – in most cases – connect onto the electricity grid illegally.

In an interview with Platinum Weekly, RLM spokesperson David Magae urged communities to refrain from accessing electricity through illegal connections. He said such practices were contributing to the power outages. “Outages are being caused by overloaded networks and this is due to illegal connections. We are having more and more people who are connecting illegally in our communities. In winter, the demand for electricity is high and illegal connections put a further strain on the electricity supply system.”

Motorists had to use alternative routes after protestors blocked the road.


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