EKURHULENI Municipality in Gauteng is set to spend R2.4 billion in an effort to electrify informal settlements.
The programme which is set to span over a period of five years will see 16 000 households having electricity by the end of the current financial year.
“We have begun to electrify households in our current informal settlements as per our manifesto commitment. We are also planning to install street lights to improve the safety of our people, especially women and children,” mayor Mzwandile Masina said.
He added that the programme would be rolled out in two faces.
The first phase would be for informal settlements located on state-owned land while legalities to roll out the programme in privately owned informal settlements is being reviewed.
To date a total of 9 943 households have been electrified in informal settlements such as Langaville, Inxiweni, Marikana, Winnie Mandela and Ekurhuleni, he added.
“The installation of streetlights is currently being rolled out with 2 263 streets lights of the targeted 3000 and 156 High Mast Lights already installed while working tirelessly to achieve the targeted 400 High Mast Lights around Ekurhuleni’s 119 informal settlements.
Improving household lighting for the poor requires stability in our energy sources,” he said.
Masina said plans were currently underway to create the necessary settlement structures that make safe and secure electricity connection possible in the different informal settlements in Ekurhuleni.
The plans include the implementation of alternative and renewable energy to limit dependence on the national grid and improve the security of energy while protecting the environment by limiting greenhouse emissions.