Johannesburg’s City Power says it has been forced to abandon its operation of removing illegal electricity connections in the CBD due to intimidation from tenants.
The power utility had targeted four hijacked buildings in Jeppestown which it says owe the city close to R20 million in unpaid electricity.
The power utility says the last time the buildings paid for electricity was in 2017.
City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena says they will continue with their operation in the coming weeks.
“We have identified several hijacked buildings that we will be raiding in the coming weeks. Whilst we had JMPD and SAPS as part of the operation, they were not sufficient enough and the angry crowd outnumbered them. A decision was taken to retreat as a safety precaution. We will plan properly and ensure there is enough law enforcement to deal with any eventuality during cut off operations,” Mangena explains.