East man still waiting for electricity – 10 years on

A place where Jabulani Joseph Mqibi is making fire wood to cook food.

Jabulani Joseph Mgidi of Mamelodi East has been without electricity for 10 years and despite many promises, he is still waiting to have his RDP house reconnected.

The rest of his neighbourhood is electrified.

The unemployed man said a fire destroyed his shack and its contents in 2007, including the pre-paid electricity meter box.

He has been visited by Tshwane electricity employees and ward councillors who made promises to help him. But nothing has materialised so far, “because I am unemployed”.

Following the fire, an RDP house was built for him, but no electricity was installed. To top it all, drug users have now stolen the cable that’s supposed to supply his house with electricity.

The 59-year-old said he has followed all the right procedures to apply for a new electricity meter box without success. He said he visited councillors during the previous administration, but received no help. The new metro administration brought him no relief either despite repeated efforts.

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He has observed how squatters in Mamelodi and Nellmapius are enjoying the benefits of illegally-connected electricity. “This is simply not fair,” he told Rekord.

“I am destined to celebrate my 10th festive period without electricity.”

The father of two said his children had left home because there was no electricity. “They are now staying with their grandparents.

“All my neighbours have electricity but me. I am tired of living in the dark without electricity.”

Local councillor Collen Marishane previously told Rekord that he was aware of Mgidi’s problem and was in the process of helping him.

He said the problem could not be fixed overnight because it was “very technical”.

Jabulani Joseph Mqibi lighting a candle in house RDP house in Mamelodi East, Extension 5.


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Stephen Selaluke
Mamelodi journalist

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