Brighter life for needy
Some of the frustrations experienced by poor households who have survived without electricity in Polokwane, Limpopo, are now coming to an end.
The city's municipality has embarked on a master plan, dubbed the "Electricity Rehabilitation Programme", which focuses on the free installation of electricity in houses within its area of jurisdiction.
About 1500 households will benefit from the project which is already in the works.
According to municipality spokesman Simon Mokoatedi the project for the upgrading of existing infrastructure and the installation of electricity in poverty-stricken households will cost millions.
Mokoatedi told Sowetan yesterday that R1million had already been spent on the installation of high and low voltage electrical systems in the township of Seshego outside the provincial capital, Polokwane.
"For the past two financial years we have allocated R1million to meet the needs for electricity in every household.
"We began by upgrading the old infrastructure to supplement more power," Mokoatedi said.
"This is part of the government's policy to provide free basic services to the needy."
The project, currently running in Seshego Zone 2 and 3, has brightened life for many families in the huge township.
Most of the houses set to benefit from the scheme are those built by the old apartheid government.
Mokete Seshibe, a 72-year-old widow, is justifiably on cloud nine about the installation of free electricity for her and her family.
Over the past years she has struggled to support her large family on her meagre pension and has been unable to pay for electricity.
"My life and that of my children and grandchildren is about to change. We have been living in darkness for the past 20 years and now this is like a dream come true," Seshibe says.
"I have been longing for this moment to come but with the social grant that I receive every month, I couldn't afford to instal electricity.
"But now that the municipality has come up with this plan, I am looking forward to a new, bright life."