Residents are urged to use the City of Tshwane's newly established By-law Enforcement Centre to report illegal land or building invasions as well as illegal electricity connections.
The By-law Enforcement Centre, which is the brainchild of the administration team, will serve as a hub to receive complaints and to coordinate interventions to curb by-law contraventions and criminal activities in Tshwane.
Parts of Tshwane have been plunged into darkness recently due to cable theft and illegal electricity connections. Land and buildings have also been invaded since the start of the COVID-19 lockdown period.
Ms Lebogang Mahaye, a member of the administration team, has urged residents to call the By-law Enforcement Centre to report illegal activities. She warned that the Tshwane Metro Police Department will act swiftly and harshly to protect the City's assets and infrastructure.
Ms Mahaye said: "Law-abiding citizens who are paying for their services have been without electricity due to cable theft and those that have been illegally connecting electricity. This has put a strain on the grid and resulted in spontaneous power outages. This behaviour constitutes criminality and we will not hesitate to act decisively to bring to book those that have been involved in unlawful and illegal acts. Some people have been taking advantage of the lockdown to commit crime and contravene the City's by-laws." She further stated that the authorities have received information that some owners of high-rise buildings have made illegal electricity connections, which resulted in parts of the city experiencing blackouts.
Ms Mahaye added: "We understand the anger and frustration of residents that have been adversely affected by these criminal and unlawful activities. It's totally unacceptable for our residents that are paying for the services to be sitting in darkness in these wintry temperatures due to the illegal activities of a few. We can't weed out this illegal, unlawful and criminal activity alone without the active involvement of our communities. We have also experienced a surge in land and building invasions and have vowed to put a stop to these. We urge our residents to be our ears and eyes and to report such acts to the centre anonymously."
The By-law Enforcement Centre is operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can be contacted on 012 358 7095/7096.