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Residents’ joy short-lived due to theft of power cables

by Lester Mekan Baha, reporters@theborneopost.com. Posted on January 16, 2013, Wednesday

IRRESPONSIBLE ACT: This power distributing structure is barren after thieves cut and stole around 1,968 yards (1.8km) of high voltage overhead power lines and three RM150,000 power line transformers from their terminals.

KUCHING: Some 1,000 residents living along the Mambong-Samarahan CMS Clinker Link Road near here want electricity to be restored to their area, following theft of the power lines.

About 200 homes there were without power when more than 12 kilometres of overhead cables were stolen barely two months after enjoying the supply in July last year.

The theft took place in an area off Kampung Quap in September and again in October that affected homes along the road near the roundabout to Kota Samarahan, and during the weekend another area near Sibenyis Quarry was without power after 1,090 yards (1km) of cables were stolen.

A source close to Sesco, who declined to be named, did not deny that the theft was highly organised and the perpetrators might have used a mobile lift-truck to steal the 1,968 yards (1.8km) of cable and three RM150,000 power line transformers from their terminals.

“I am puzzled why the activities were carried out unnoticed by the relevant authorities as they carted away their loots in trucks or lorries,” he said.

He suggested that Sesco look into possible links between the thefts and scrap metal dealers.

“Anything can happen and if there is information on such incidents, the company should immediately lodge a police report before investigations are conducted to find the culprits.

“And reward should be offered by the power distribution company for information leading to a conviction,” he added.

A village spokesperson Molly Yati said the villagers had appealed to the relevant parties to quickly restore the power supply as the electrical appliances that they had bought could not be used, while some have resorted to using generator sets for power supply.

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