Eskom raid for illicit power hits 1000 shacks

IN TROUBLE: A municipal official disconnects an illegal electricity connection at Barcelona Extension in Daveyton, Benoni. Pic. Dan Fuphe. © Sowetan.
IN TROUBLE: A municipal official disconnects an illegal electricity connection at Barcelona Extension in Daveyton, Benoni. Pic. Dan Fuphe. © Sowetan.

Dan Fuphe

In an unprecedented show of power, several dozens of senior Eskom officials and technicians, assisted by heavily armed law enforcement agencies, yesterday disconnected power supply from about 1000 illegally connected shacks at Barcelona extensions 32 and 34 in Daveyton, Benoni.

The officers were drawn from the SAPS, Ekurhuleni Metro police department and the Red Ants.

At least one man was arrested after he was allegedly pointed out by locals as being part of a group which clandestinely worked with Eskom employees to illegally supply and connect electricity to shack dwellers in the area.

Also apprehended by police yesterday was pensioner Amos Dladla, 70, who told the police he had allowed locals to tap onto his power supply because of poverty.

"I have not killed anyone. But, here I am being treated like a criminal," he said.

He was issued with a fine of R650 and and a connection fee of R1100.

In one the the shacks, whose owner is known as "Mr Eskom or CEO Maroga", officials found what they claimed was a "mini sub-station". Several plugs and connections were found attached to the meter in a shack.

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