Keetmans Agrees to Cut Ties With Selco

KEETMANSHOOP residents have unequivocally told the municipality to cut ties with Southern Electricity Company Ltd (SELCo) and to do it fast.

Many of the residents who aired their views at a community meeting, believe that the council has the capacity to take back the electricity management and supply at the town, since all electricity infrastructures are owned by it.

In addition, the residents suggested that all workers whom council had seconded to SELCo after parties had entered the 15-year power deal be re-appointed by council to manage the electricity supply at the town. The residents made the call at a public meeting the council had convened last Thursday to inform the residents that the power supply contract the council had entered with SELCo in August 2001 had been declared illegal and unenforceable by the High Court last month.

Addressing the meeting, the town’s mayor, Moses Titus, said the gathering’s aim was also to seek the residents’ views and direction on the way forward regarding the management and distribution of electricity supply at the town.

Titus said council has resolved to suggest to SELCo to manage the electricity supply at the town until 31 May for the sole purpose of preventing the town’s electricity supply failure, possibly resulting in chaos.

He also said the council currently lacks manpower in the electrical fields and may not be ready to immediately take over the management of electricity supply at the town or to enter a joint venture with SELCo or any power distributing company.

However, Titus was quick to point out that council is ready to take back the management of electricity supply at the town, adding that it’s striving towards a smooth takeover to prevent any electricity blackouts.

SELCo managing director, Abraham Kukuri, yesterday refused to comment on the residents’ proposals to the council to cut ties with the electricity company. “I was not there (at the community meeting) and it would be irresponsible for me to comment on what was said there because I do not know in which context it was said,” said Kukuri.

He regarded the proposals made by the community against SELCo as “illegal,” claiming that according to information he had received there was no ‘quorum’.

Kukuri acknowledged the council’s suggestion to SELCo to manage the electricity supply at the town until end of May to prevent any power blackouts. However, he was quick to say that he has put “an embargo” on comments until council and SELCo conclude their discussion on the Electricity Management Contract.

Source : The Namibian