AMAT (Pty) Ltd, contracted by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality for three years, faces the task of reducing revenue losses through electricity theft by R50 million annually for the duration of their contract.
Mr Nceba Faku, AMAT Director for Special Projects, accepted the challenge and said that it is important to note that electricity theft is not confined to previously disadvantaged areas as more sophisticated devices are used to steal electricity in suburbs.
“An audit will be done across the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipal area to determine thefts in all areas as we are aware that people are making money by installing gadgets to steal electricity. We are coming for them and will expose them,” Faku said.
AMAT has been appointed by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality as a service provider to develop strategies that will curb electricity theft (reducing non-technical losses) on the NMBM’s electricity network for revenue improvement.
The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality lost approximately R200 million in the last financial year due to electricity theft.
Executive Mayor Benson Fihla said: “The challenge facing us is going to require many tough and unpopular decisions to be made. The ability to take these decisions while retaining broad support across all our communities and sectors will only be possible if the leadership and administration have the necessary confidence and trust of communities. This is a task that can only be achieved by a leadership and community with the will to succeed.
“Our role as local government, together with AMAT will be multifaceted and key in ensuring that we meet the challenges, address disparities, unify our communities and assist in the NMBM service delivery and developmental mandate.
“Given the AMAT terms of reference, I am convinced that their invaluable contribution will serve this metro, as expected, in an efficient, effective and sustainable way,” Mayor Fihla said.
AMAT employees, with clearly identifiable vehicles and identity cards, will soon be visible at households and businesses in Nelson Mandela Bay to start their important work that entails a multi-faceted approach to deal with this problem.
Mr Mvuleni Bukula, Director: Retail and Commercial Management, said the municipality had consultations with both unions (Samwu and Imatu) to make it clear that AMAT is not taking jobs from workers since their implementation complements the work done by municipal workers.
Standing Committee Chairperson for Budget and Treasury, Cllr Balu Naran, made the call for the R50 million annual saving and said he is extremely happy that the tender process was thorough and all stakeholders had the opportunity to give input.
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