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Power cut dampens township’s World Cup mood

By Reuters Staff
June 11, 2010
SOUTH-AFRICANwabisa Ingrid Jamekwana writes from Khayelitsha township on the outskirts of Cape Town on the difficulties of watching the World Cup there.

The excitement is here in the townships too. We have our flags, our caps, our second hand sport shirts. All that is missing are the games.

Our electricity was cut off just a few days ago in what looks as though it was a crackdown on irregular power connections by the power company Eskom. No light. No television.

The only way to get electricity now would be to run a cable from the nearby brick houses, but that’s not an option if you don’t have the money to be able to buy the wire as well as someone who will let you take from their supply.

A few lucky people still have the right connections. Their shacks will be full of neighbours coming to watch the games.

We still hope Eskom will recognise us one day and give us our own electricity so we don’t have to tap from elsewhere. Until then we will just have to cram into other people’s houses.


Eskom is trying to avoid a huge strike over wages and has raised rates on paying customers over twenty percent increases for the next three years. Free power may not be an option because someone has to pay wage increases. What South Africa needs is job creation for that twenty five percent unemployed and solve this problem.

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