E­lec­tri­ci­ty-sup­ply re­sto­red

Oudtshoorn Courant - - NEWS - HEINRICH GROOTBOOM

A group of an­gry re­si­dents of se­ver­al af­fected a­re­as in Graaff-Rei­net gat­he­red in front of the lo­cal mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty on F­ri­day af­ter­noon, af­ter they dis­co­ve­r­ed that they we­re u­na­ble to pur­cha­se e­lec­tri­ci­ty due to non-pay­ment of mu­ni­ci­pal ser­vi­ces. The e­lec­tri­ci­ty has sin­ce been re­sto­red to the­se a­re­as.

Ac­cor­ding to Si­as Smith of the Graaf­fRei­net Acti­on Com­mit­tee, re­si­dents of the Ge­luks­dal, Kroon­va­le, Riem­vas­maak, Man­de­la Park, As­her­vil­le, Koe­berg­vil­le and San­ta­vil­le we­re so­me of the a­re­as that we­re cut-off from the sup­ply of e­lec­tri­ci­ty on T­hurs­day wit­hout pri­or no­ti­ce.

The E­lec­tri­ci­ty Ba­sic Ser­vi­ce Sup­port Ta­riff (Free Ba­sic E­lec­tri­ci­ty) Po­li­cy of 2003, sta­tes pe­op­le who meet spe­ci­fic cri­te­ria qua­li­fy for the al­lo­ca­ti­on of free ba­sic e­lec­tri­ci­ty, which is li­mi­ted to a max­i­mum of 50kWh per hou­se­hold, per month. A­ny­thing a­bo­ve this li­mit will be char­ged to the cu­s­to­mer.

Smith sta­ted that a por­ti­on of the mo­ney paid for pre­paid e­lec­tri­ci­ty g­oes to­wards a ser­vi­ce that they do not re­cei­ve re­gu­lar­ly from the mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty. Furt­her­mo­re, ser­vi­ce de­li­very in the­se a­re­as has been pro­ble­ma­tic for so­me ti­me.

Smith ad­ded that the­se ser­vi­ces in­clu­de the re­mo­val of re­fu­se, which hap­pens spo­ra­di­cal­ly, and re­si­dents are being bil­led for wa­ter w­hen the­re is no sup­ply of wa­ter to the­se re­si­den­ti­al a­re­as.

Ward Coun­cil­lor Joy Wil­li­ams said that the re­a­son for the dis­con­necti­on was a re­so­lu­ti­on ta­ken by the mu­ni­ci­pal coun­cil.

The e­lec­tri­ci­ty to the­se ef­fected a­re­as was re­con­nected un­con­di­ti­o­nal­ly by la­te F­ri­day af­ter­noon, Smith said.

Photo: Heinrich Grootboom

An­gry re­si­dents gat­her out­si­de the Graaff-Rei­net mu­ni­ci­pal of­fi­ces, af­ter being bloc­ked from pur­cha­sing e­lec­tri­ci­ty, wit­hout pri­or no­ti­ce from the mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty.

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