29 December 2012

Tanzania: Stolen Electric Cables Disrupt Power Supply in Kilimanjaro

Moshi — UNRELENTING theft of electric cables in Kilimanjaro Region has caused a lot of inconveniences disrupting economic activities as some of the places remained for 18 hours without power.

Official record from relevant offices maintain that so far more than 4,000 meters including the recent thievery of 350 meters of the same that occurred in Shiri Matunda ward in Moshi urban area this week.

Interviewed residents said uncontrolled theft in their localities had caused serious power cut and officials from the Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) have been telling them that power interruption was due to theft of electric cables.

A resident from Shanty Town, who preferred anonymity for fear of reprisals said that other areas that had experienced serious power disconnections include the Aga Khan, Arusha Road and Shanty Town areas. According to reliable sources, the copper cables are stolen and sold to a ready market in Mombasa at attractive prices.

Kilimanjaro Regional Police Commander (RPC), told this reporter that such incidents had never been reported to the police for the law-enforcers to act accordingly. The Shanty Town residents further informed this newspaper that there was power blackout two days before Christmas, saying,

"We experience the blackout between 13 and 15 hours a day and restored late in the evening. Reliable power supply is the life line of all activities without which everything comes to a standstill, he said.

Adding, for the last three days he has experienced power cuts and has suffered loss of between 300,000/- and 400,000/- He noted that not everybody could afford to access other sources of power, such as generators, saying TANESCO should ensure that permanent power supply was in place and that no excuses should be condoned.

Efforts to contact TANESCO Public Relations Manager, Ms Badra Masoud, to comment on this proved futile yesterday as her mobile phone kept on ringing without a reply.

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