What you need to know:
- Mr Peter Mwesigwa, the Umeme Nakulabye district manager, said illegal connections are not only causing death but also untold losses to Umeme.
Kampala. In a period of nine months, nearly $200,000 (Shs800m) worth of damages to transformers have been recorded by power distributor, Umeme in Nakulabye alone.
According to Mr Samson Ttondo Ssemakalu, the Umeme customer service engineer, 20 transformers have been lost in Nakulabye since the start of the year, costing the company millions of shillings.
“Sine January, about 20 transformers have been lost in Nakulabye. These transformers are in your midst, but people come and take oil from them as you watch,” he said.
The average cost of a transformer, Mr Ssemakalu said, is $10,000 (Shs37.6m). On average, two transformers were indicated to have been lost per month with April recording a loss of six transformers.
During the time, Umeme said, each customer lost power for about 15 hours per day in addition causing a loss to Umeme of $483,000(Shs1.9b).
Mr Nsamba Charles, the District Police Commander Old Kampala Police Station, said several cases of vandalism and illegal connections are reported at the station on a daily basis.
In the 2017 annual police report, a total of 83 cases were reported in theft of telecom, electrical and communication items and 8,078 in malicious damage to property.
This was revealed during a stakeholder engagement with police leaders in charge of the region where the power distributor rolled out the output based aid programme.
Mr Peter Mwesigwa, the Umeme Nakulabye district manager, said illegal connections are not only causing death but also untold losses to Umeme.
Umeme is leveraging on output based aid programme, an outreach programme that subsidises power connection to make it affordable to reduce illegal connections.