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» » Poorly maintained Zesa infrastructure endanger residents

Diana Gondongwe
Residents of Rujeko high density in Masvingo have complained that electricity infrastructure in their area is poorly maintained, causing intermittent sparks on transformers and overhead cables as well as irritating power failures.
Some Rujeko C residents said frightful sparks on transformers and cable often precede a power failure, with some visits by Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) employees seemingly failing to make a difference.
“We don’t feel safe having derelict equipment at our service. Transformers and power cables are producing sparks and some poles no longer stand straight. I don’t think Zesa has a regular maintenance schedule that really works. Their electricity is becoming a danger to residents and their appliances,” said Clayson Chimbidzikai.
Another resident said he blamed poorly maintained infrastructure for the consistent short-time power cuts that he said had damaged his refrigerator.
 “We have on and off electricity every week and my fridge was recently damaged. But that is only a minor issue if we are to look at the danger that non-maintained power lines and transformers pose to children. They need to revisit the whole infrastructure network and diagnose areas of possible faults rather than just wait to respond to power failures,” said the resident.
Recently, 69-year-old Theresa Mathe of Hillside was electrocuted while pruning an avocado tree which was in the way of the electricity line at her home.
On December 30, 2018, 17-years-old Batanai Shava of Mukahamari village Ward 5 in Mwenezi, who was waiting for his ‘O’ level examination results, was electrocuted while crossing fallen electricity poles.
Over 100 houses in Rujeko spent over three months without electricity after their transformer exploded on December 07, 2018.

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