Workers Suspended Over Outage

The Southern Electricity Company (SELCo) has suspended five electricians and laid a criminal charge with the Keetmanshoop Police after a nail was found driven into the main electrical feeder to the Tseiblaagte residential area that plunged the town into darkness last Friday.

According to Managing Director of SELCo, Abraham Kukuri, the nail was found during an investigation shortly after four near simultaneous power failures occurred, which is very irregular.

Kukuri said two suspects were identified by excavation workers who saw two men near the damaged cable on Saturday morning.

He could not explain why they would suspect people who were seen at the crime scene a day after the crime took place.

“If I mention that I would be implicating people. That information was given to us by other people and it is sensitive information, but there are so many loose ends,” Kukuri said, stressing that he could not give more information regarding the two suspects.

However, he said that to continue the investigation unhindered SELCo’s electricians needed to be suspended as well.

“The investigation must start from somewhere, and the nail was inside the cable – who would you suspect if it is inside?” he asked.

He said SELCo also had to fly in material and two additional experts with the necessary skills, who worked round the clock to restore power to the community on Saturday morning at around 04h30.

The police crime investigations coordinator in the Karas Region, Deputy Commissioner Rudolf Isaaks confirmed that a charge of malicious damage to property was laid.

SELCo is a subsidiary of Southern Electricity Company Ltd, a public company listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.

SELCo being a utility company provides a full range of services in the electricity field, specializing in distribution, management, metering, billing and revenue management and has a proven record as a successful service provider with various long-term concessions.

SELCo has been operative in southern Namibia serving the towns of Aranos, Keetmanshoop and Karasburg since 2000 and 2001.

Source : New Era