ZETDC Bemoan lncreasing Vandalism, Theft Of Electrical lnfrastructure

The Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) has raised concern over the increasing problem of vandalism and theft of its property, with over 1500 cases recorded in the past year alone.

According to the power utility, the increase in vandalism is having a severe impact on the country’s power supply and costing millions of dollars in repairs and replacements.

“In 2023 alone, a total of 1 569 cases of vandalism and theft were reported, and of these cases, 172 arrests were made and 33 cases were convicted. We urge all stakeholders to join forces to protect electrical infrastructure,” the power utility said in a statement.

In December last year, large areas of the Eastern Highlands region, including popular tourist resorts in Vumba, were left without electricity after thieves stole 5km of cable.

The power utility said they were making numerous efforts to resolve the issue and restore power as soon as possible.

“Whilst we had initiated our normal procurement process and were ready to restore supplies, there was another case of vandalism of a transformer in Vumba which led to the arrest of two men from Odzi who are now appearing before the criminal courts.

“Accordingly, as at the end of last week, the utility had managed to source the critical materials to re-power the affected areas. We have initiated the commencement of the works and a continuous wayleave clearance to help reduce damages due to faults and customers are advised to expect restoration of service by mid next week.”

The company also called for coordinated efforts to curb the vandalism, warning that the problem could lead to more frequent disruptions in electricity supply.

“Vandalism has become a menace, and the utility is battling to keep up with the replacement of stolen power lines and transformers. We urge all stakeholders to join forces to protect electrical infrastructure.

“The utility would like to reiterate its support and commitment to provide power to all essential industries of the economy”.

This is inclusive of the tourism and hospitality industry, where measures are in place to ensure that industry players always have power supply.

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