Reitumetse Makwea and Siyanda Ndlovu
2 minute read
9 Jun 2021
4:05 pm

Eskom the root of poverty in townships, say demonstrators at Megawatt Park

Reitumetse Makwea and Siyanda Ndlovu

'When people are frustrated and start burning tires and blocking roads, that creates a lot of problems for businesses.'

Demonstrators at Eskom’s head office in Megawatt Park described constant power cuts or no electricity at all as the root of poverty in the township.

Soweto residents from Orlando, Pimville, Sunvalley, White City, Ndofaya, Protea and Dube marched to the utility’s offices in Woodmead demanding the reconnection of electricity in some areas which have been without power for months.

Members of the community were supported by the Soweto Tourism sector.

Thato Mothopeng, chairperson of Tourism Soweto said most of the problems in the township resulted from the demonstrations by frustrated residents which prevented much economic activities in the community.

 

 

 

Mothopeng said that these were a direct result of Eskom’s doings.

“When people are frustrated and start burning tires and blocking roads, that creates a lot of problems for businesses in the vicinity. So you find that the business is also interrupted, which ends up disrupting the local economy as a whole.”

He said that the tourism sector in the area was also taking strain because of power cuts.

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“Soweto is a very well attended place in terms of tourism whether domestic, local or international tourists, but these power cuts have interrupted our businesses. As you know we have B&Bs in Soweto, we have restaurants in Soweto and when the power goes off they disrupt the businesses,” Mothopeng said.