The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) has unearthed shocking cases of illegal connections in a blitz conducted in Harare this Thursday (yesterday).
The ZBC News witnessed confrontations between ZESA officials and some daring individuals engaging in unholy alliances that have prejudiced the power utility of over $10 million quarterly.
The illegal connections are also a thorn in the flesh of honest Zimbabweans who are made to pay for others’ mischief in the form of power cuts.
One daring culprit in Mbare had the audacity of threatening ZESA officials, claiming that his rights were being violated.
“I have my rights you cannot come to my house and start to question me. I have my rights. I am not the only one who is doing this,” said the Mbare-based culprit.
This news crew also discovered that the man was sub-letting a welding company to operate from his house and charging exorbitant electricity fees, which never reach the power company’s coffers.
The ZESA team witnessed the same modus operandi being used to shortchange the nation at a popular liquor centre in Glen Norah A.
The tenant at the centre revealed that she had been operating from the place since 2014 and had been paying ZESA bills through the property owner.
ZESA Public Relations Manager, Mr Fullard Gwasira warned the public against by-passing power lines and tempering with prepaid metres.
“We are warning the public to desist from such behaviour. The nation is losing a lot of money through these connections and besides, it is dangerous as a Bulawayo man was electrocuted recently while stealing copper cables,” said Mr Gwasira.
Cases of vandalism and tempering with ZESA property are on the increase.
The law criminalises illegal power connections and vandalism of ZESA property, with the crimes attracting up to a 10-year jail sentence.