AfriForum laid a charge of culpable homicide in cooperation with the Grabouw community against Matshela Koko, acting CEO of Eskom, at the Grabouw Police Station on 2 February 2017.
This follows after a mother of two was electrocuted on 18 January 2017 while walking on her way home through open veld close to the informal settlement Blikkiesdorp. She stepped onto an open electrical cable that was connected illegally between a lamp pole and a corrugated-iron house.
“The community of Grabouw brought the issue of illegal connections to Eskom’s attention on various occasions. However, it seems to have fallen on deaf ears,” says Sias van Tonder, a local member of AfriForum.
“After a visit to Blikkiesdorp, I am astonished that there aren’t more such accidents. Electricity is being relayed directly from lamp poles to houses with common wire – those used to put up fences. These wires criss-cross one another and some even stretch along directly on the ground,” says Thomas van Dalen, AfriForum’s Provincial Coordinator for the Western Cape.
“The matter has also been brought to the attention of the office of the Premier of the Western Cape, but we have not received any reaction yet. This is a case of negligence and disrespect for lives,” Van Dalen concluded.