Faizel Patel – 05/08/2021
City Power says it will impose hefty fines on residents who connect to the Johannesburg power grid illegally.
The power utility says it needs to recoup losses amounting to R2 billion a year due to illegal electricity connections.
City Power says the move also comes after the fatal electrocution of the newly-weds lost their lives in Crosby during which it discovered that their rented house had a tampered meter and a missing earth leakage.
It says meter tampering is a crime and fraud and may result in criminal charges being laid against an offender.
“The amendment allows for the imposition of a severe penalty, which includes a maximum imprisonment of up to 30 years for the offender and a minimum sentence of not less than three years behind bars.”
City Power says municipal bylaws also allows it to cut electricity of the offender and remove their cable and circuit breaker and for a prepaid customer a meter as well.
“Offenders will have to pay a reconnection fee penalty of between R10,000 and R50,000 when they apply for a reconnection depending on the seriousness of the offence.
City Power says not only are illegal connections a violation of municipal bylaws and a danger to the people in the communities but they cause overloading on mini-substations and pole mounted transformers which eventually explode and burn leaving residents without power.