Power finally restored in Joburg city centre

14 September 2017 - 09:32 By Penwell Dlamini
Aerial view of Johannesburg City centre.
Aerial view of Johannesburg City centre.
Image: Wikimedia Commons

Power has been restored in the Johannesburg city centre after cable theft plunged parts of the area into darkness.

This was confirmed on Thursday by Ntombi Khumalo‚ acting MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services.

“Yesterday afternoon [Wednesday] I conducted a site visit to the Inner City Restoration Centre‚ and I am happy to announce that as of this morning‚ 100% of power has been restored after cable theft plunged parts of the inner city in to darkness for 11 days‚” said Khumalo.

“Toxic chemicals and fire prevented City Power officials from immediately entering the narrow‚ 9km long tunnel to restore power‚ and only around 22:00 on Tuesday.

City Power technicians were able to restore electricity supply to areas which were affected by the power interruption in the Johannesburg City Centre.

“Unfortunately‚ electricity tripped during the restoration period‚ and Rahima Moosa (Jeppe) Street‚ Plein Street‚ Pritchard Street‚ Kerk Street and Lillian Ngoyi (Bree) Street were affected again. By yesterday‚ only a small portion of Plein Street was still down‚ and by this morning all power has been restored.”

Businesses were thrown into the dark when cable theft resulted in the CBD not having power for 11 days. Malls were closed and businesses had to use generators to remain in operation. Some of the firms in the city centre suffered losses‚ in particular those who needed power to keep their stock fresh.

Khumalo said a unit within the Johannesburg Metro Police Department assigned to dealing with theft of infrastructure will continue to fight the scourge of copper cable theft.