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Electricity fraudsters face the music as amnesty ends Print E-mail
28 June 2017
Prepaid

Time is running out for the City of Johannesburg customers who have tampered with their electricity meters to avoid paying for their power consumption.

Customers who have not been purchasing electricity for a considerable period of time because they have been getting it through meter-tampering acts have only a few days to report this to City Power, the City’s electricity utility, or face heavy penalties.

The three-month amnesty granted to register meters that have been tampered ends on Friday June 30.

City Power spokesperson Virgil James says registering these meters during the amnesty period, which started on April 1, will help customers to avoid penalties such as the reconnection fee and average monthly consumption charges for the period the meter was not vending.

City Power technicians will then come out to “normalise” the meter free of charge.

James says meter tampering constitutes fraud and may result in criminal charges being preferred on the offending customers. He says meter tampering includes any act that results in the breaking of a seal; opening, adjustment or removal of a meter; bypassing a meter; opening of a meter box; or interfering with the meter or municipal wiring, piping or any other installation in any manner whatsoever.

Categories of meter tampering include bypassed meters; faulty meters or keypads (customer interactive units); connection through stolen meters, meters bought illegally from electrical contractors, technicians; and illegally connected meters.

Customers whose meters have been found to have been tampered with are liable for their actions, except during the current amnesty. To apply for the amnesty, customers are required to provide their City of Johannesburg rates and taxes statement not older than three months, a valid identity document, stand number and meter number.

Customers can apply for amnesty at City Power Head Office, 40 Heronmere Road, Reuven, Booysens.

The City of Johannesburg loses millions of rands every year through illegal electricity connections, including meter tampering. Research into meter tampering in Johannesburg has found that some of the biggest culprits are large companies.

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Last Updated on 28 June 2017