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Illegal connections cost Escom millions

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Peter Kanjere

The Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) has bemoaned rising cases of illegal connection of electricity in the country.

Escom Public Relations Officer Peter Kanjere said the company was registering more of cases of the vice.

According to Kanjere, two people were arrested in Chiradzulu three weeks ago while two others were sentenced to 18 years imprisonment in Mzuzu recently.

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On Tuesday, Escom officials disconnected electricity from three houses in Chileka, Blantyre, which has cost the corporation close to K3 million in an estimated three-year-period.

This, Kanjere said, is posing a big threat to Malawians and the country as a whole.

“Apart from revenue costs for Escom, illegal connection of electricity poses a big threat to the people around that area due to lack of expertise in the process. Furthermore, in some cases, it becomes a great loss to Malawians because, for instance, the electricity being used at these houses could have been put to use in hospitals,” he said.

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Meanwhile, a search has commenced for one of the alleged culprits from one of the three houses.

According to Chileka- Kanjedza Community Policing Coordinator, Sub inspector Emmanuel Kalungu, the man vandalised an Escom vehicle and assaulted some of the corporation’s staff members when they went to disconnect electricity on Sunday.

He later re-connected before Escom workers returned on Tuesday.

Between 2019 and 2020, Escom lost over K1 billion to vandalism, illegal connections and tampering of meters.

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