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Eskom contractor shot dead as gang of 30 open fire

18 January 2022 - 14:54 By TimesLIVE
An Eskom security contractor and six of his colleagues were shot at by heavily-armed suspects as they allegedly attempted to steal copper cable in Soweto.
An Eskom security contractor and six of his colleagues were shot at by heavily-armed suspects as they allegedly attempted to steal copper cable in Soweto.
Image: REUTERS/ TIM WIMBORNE

An Eskom security contractor has died after he and his colleagues came under attack in Soweto last week.

The state-owned power utility said the man died from head injuries sustained when “he and six of his colleagues were shot at by approximately 30 heavily-armed suspects during an alleged attempt to steal copper cable outside the Eskom Klipspruit customer network centre in Soweto”.

The incident took place on January 13.

According to Eskom, the seven security officers drove out of the centre to return to their post at Mapetla substation just before midnight when the gang opened fire on them.

“It is alleged the suspects were attempting to steal the City Power copper cable when the team of seven security officers drove towards them. Other security officers managed to escape unharmed,” Eskom said.

The power utility’s safety, health, environment, quality and security manager in Gauteng, Kith Maitisa, said he was deeply concerned about how criminals had cut short the man’s life.

“Eskom sympathises with the family of the deceased security officer and is deeply concerned about such criminal acts that cost the life of a breadwinner. Our role is to provide safe and reliable electricity to customers. Such acts have a negative impact on us achieving this obligation.

“We will not compromise the safety of our employees and will recall our employees should their safety be at risk.”

Eskom said it continued to experience high incidents of theft and vandalism of infrastructure, which is “beyond what Eskom can handle, even with all controls in place”.

TimesLIVE


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