Security Personnel To Guard Electricity Infrastructure - Minister Moyo
The government has resolved to secure Epping Forest and Rochester Aquifer in Nyamandlovu to curb vandalism of electricity infrastructure, which is contributing to Bulawayo’s water crisis.
Police officers and security guards will soon be deployed at Epping Forest and Rochester Aquifer to protect electricity infrastructure which includes transformers and copper cables.
This followed the setting up of an inter-ministerial committee to provide both short and long-term solutions to Bulawayo’s perennial water challenges.
The committee comprises Ministers of Local Government and Public Works; Power and Energy Development; Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage; Lands, Agriculture, Water, Fisheries and Rural Development; Bulawayo Provincial Affairs and Devolution, the security sector and Bulawayo City Council (BCC).
Speaking in an interview with State media, Local Government and Public Works Minister July Moyo said security personnel will soon be deployed to safeguard the electricity infrastructure. He said:
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Although ZESA and everyone are suggesting that we replace the copper transformers, which are targeted by thieves, that process is likely to take longer.
What we have, therefore, agreed on is that ZINWA and the city council must work with the security cluster.
Zimbabwe Republic Police must have permanent staff at Epping Forest and Rochester Aquifer to protect the area from acts of vandalism.
Instead of getting 20 megalitres from Epping Forest, we are only getting 3ML/day, which is an issue of grave concern.
They are stealing the oil and the copper. The city council working with ZINWA must have permanent security personnel stationed at all those transformers because we are now jeopardising the lives of over 60 000 people in the city’s western suburbs.
Moyo said the government was hopeful that the amendment of a law that will ensure electricity vandals get a mandatory 30-year jail term will be a deterrent and reduce the copper theft cases. | Chronicle