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R1,9 million in copper cables stolen in Metsimaholo municipality

SASOLBURG - The DA in the Free State says in this year alone, Metsimaholo Local Municipality in Sasolburg has reported R1,9 million worth of stolen copper cables that affected service delivery. DA Member of the National Council of Provinces, George Michalakis MP, said that since April 2019, there have been a total of 19 919 cases of copper theft at essential infrastructure across the country, this alarming number points to the South African Police Service’s (SAPS) inability to effectively deal with the problem. Michalakis said over the past 4 years, despite sporadic arrests of syndicates, the number of copper cable theft-related crimes at infrastructure such as water and electricity supply has not declined significantly. This was revealed in a Parliamentary question to the Democratic Alliance (DA) by the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele. He said Gauteng (5914), the Western Cape (2522) and the Free State (2452) are the provinces where these crimes occur the most. Theft of copper cables to critical municipal infrastructure affects water provision to residents, schools and hospitals, and has a seriously detrimental effect on businesses already hard hit by loadshedding. It also has further cost implications for replacing such infrastructure, where such funds should have been used for service delivery.

PHOTO: (City Press)

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