Prolonged power outages in the town of Komani in the Eastern Cape have led to residents deciding to shut down the town. Locals say the outages are not a result of the rolling blackouts, but due to negligence and non-maintenance of municipal power supplies.
They say the ailing infrastructure of the municipality has not been maintained for three decades. The blackouts have affected the delivery of services, schools and businesses.
The residents have since called for the dissolution of the troubled Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality. One affected resident, Caren Smith says life has become a struggle without power.
“The electricity, most of the time it’s off. It will come back for five minutes then it’s off again our meat has been going rotten everybody has been throwing their food away.”
The Speaker of the Enoch Mgijima council, Noluthando Nqabisa has admitted they have maintenance challenges.
“There is an issue of maintenance its been thirty years when we came we found an infrastructure that’s been there for thirty years and not been maintained DBSA will provide a maintenance plan so that when we put a transformer to ensure it’s able to accommodate. Every time maintenance is a challenge of course.”
Challenges at Frontier hospital
Meanwhile, Frontier hospital in Komani in the Eastern Cape is using six generators to function since last week Friday when the electricity supply to the facility failed due to cable damage. The lost supply to the hospital is just one of numerous electricity supply problems plaguing the town.
The spokesperson for the provincial health department, Yonela Dekeda, says the hospital is open for business.
“We want to assure the public that the department continues to offer services to the people of the area. We want to condemn the ongoing allegations on social media that the department is sending patients away from the facility.”
VIDEO | Frontier Hospital patients under threat due to rolling blackouts: