Bogus ZESA workers con residents
A number of residents in Luveve and Iminyela were conned by people claiming to be Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) employees after being asked to pay for the replacement of stolen cables.
The men, who were given the money, told residents that after the payments, it would not take time to replace the cables.
An Iminyela resident who organised fellow residents to contribute the money, Mr Kenneth Nyoni, said they paid US$190 to someone claiming to be a ZETDC employee last month.
He said 152 households were affected by the theft of electrical copper cables.
Mr Nyoni said residents were told to pay US$200.
“I collected US$2 per household. We had no way of surviving and that was the only fastest option and we opted for it,” said Mr Nyoni.
“Some residents at Iminyela chose not to pay while some opted to pay so a total of $500, ZAR30 and US$186 was collected. I was collecting it with one of our residents Mr Sibanda.”
Mr Nyoni said on July 20, he went to ZETDC’s Donnington office looking for the alleged employee in the company of another affected resident. They stood outside the gate and asked people who were inside to call the alleged employee.
He said they had intended to buy the cables but the man came and told them that they had to give him the money.
“When he came, he told us that we should give him the money and he was going to buy those cables since he has a car to transport them,” said Mr Nyoni.
The residents chairperson of Ward 13 which covers Iminyela suburb, Mr Methuseli Bhebhe said money was also demanded in another part of the same suburb by people claiming to be ZEDTC employees. He said US$216 was collected and handed over to them.
“I can safely confirm that part of Iminyela still has no electricity for almost one-and-a-half months now. I am not part of the affected area but it has been noted that residents contributed a certain amount of money so that the electrical problem could be fixed earlier,” he said.
A Luveve resident Mr Mkhululi Ndlela, (47) said he collected money from residents when they had no electricity as they wanted the problem to be solved immediately.
“A person who said he was from ZETDC told us that our report is number 40 in the affected areas’ list and said they can only fix our transformer in three months’ time unless we pay something. That is when they would come earlier so we had to pay US$1 per household,” he said.
ZETDC Western Region general manager Lloyd Jaji said it is against the company’s policy to demand money from residents.
He said the matter was under investigation.
“As a company we do not allow this and will not condone such behaviour. We have initiated investigations so that we bring such elements to book and weed them out of the system. We also need all information that can assist us in the investigation,” said Mr Jaji.
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