BCM electrifies shacks to fight Izinyoka
In an attempt to curb illegal electricity connections (Izinyoka), the Buffalo City Metro has launched a programme to electrify 45 000 informal dwellings at a whooping cost of R700 million. This however, does not include the upgrade to the network that will be required.
Xola Pakati, the BCM Mayor launched the electrification project last week in Peelton with 183 homes in the Kanana informal settlement lighting up the legal way. “Proper electricity will help decrease the death toll of innocent children. Izinyoka costs us a substantial amount of revenue and causes damage to infrastructure. It is our duty as the Metro to put an end to illegal connections,” said Pakati.
A total of 18 local labourers and a community liaison officer have been employed from the community for the duration of the project which was completed in June. Mzomhle informal settlement in Gonubie has been approved for the next phase. Meanwhile, the Metro is doing a feasibility study on other areas waiting for approval. Only shacks that meet the electrification guidelines can be electrified.
These shacks must be on BCMM land, must be zoned for domestic and not impeded by environmental or safety issues, must have a layout and a number of other criteria.