The City of Cape Town’s Electricity Services Department has provided relief to the residents of Manenberg despite a hostile reception over the past few days.
On Wednesday, 12 February 2014, Electricity Services staff went into the area and managed to connect a generator, providing an electricity supply to families in Manenberg. This is a temporary measure and the efforts to locate the original fault are ongoing.
This action comes after days of threatened violence which have prevented City staff, under the advisement of the South African Police Services (SAPS), from entering the area.
‘As a result of the ongoing violence, families have been forced to be without electricity. This is regrettable, but we have continued making every effort to restore the service in the area,’ says the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Utility Services, Councillor Ernest Sonnenberg.
On the evening of Monday, 10 February 2014, staff of the City’s Electricity Services Department were alerted that the Manenberg Laan substation was tripping as a result of a cable fault. However, due to violence in the area, the Manenberg branch of the SAPS advised Electricity Services not to enter the area that evening or the following morning.
On Tuesday, 11 February 2014, under the escort of the SAPS, staff went into the area intending to set up a generator for a temporary supply and to continue attempts to locate and repair the fault. However, they only had an opportunity to identify a faulty feeder which feeds into Sabie Walk, before they were advised by the SAPS to leave the area for their own safety.
Staff persisted and tried to enter the area again that same evening, accompanied by the City’s Metro Police. As staff entered the location where they planned to connect the generator, the SAPS advised Metro Police that two people had just been shot and that the armed suspects were still in the area. The Metro Police therefore advised against entering the area to install the generator. Staff then moved towards the outskirts of the area and the operation had to be called off.
‘Whilst the safety of City staff remains a priority, residents are assured that the City is doing all that it can to ensure service delivery to all of our residents,’ says Councillor Sonnenberg.