The Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) has embarked on a countrywide operation to identify customers who tamper with Luku meters whereby more 70 suspects were netted in Dar es Salaam on Monday.
The operation started on Monday and is scheduled to end on Friday.
The operation carried out in Ilala District in Dar es Salaam on Monday netted 51 people who were taken to police for questioning on suspicion of illegal connections of electricity and non-payment of power bills while in Kinondoni over 20 people were identified and four were arrested.
Ilala Tanesco Regional Manager Eng Athanasius Nangali said this on Monday at Upanga in Dar es Salaam after his office had inspected some houses in the area.
He said the inspection conducted at Upanga affected power consumers who bypassed Tanesco meters and those with big electricity bills.
Ilala Tanesco region covers Tabata, the City Industrial Area, Dar es Salaam Business District and Gongo la Mboto.
Nangali said a good number of people have connected power illegally using unauthorised electricians, popularly known as Vishoka, who are now rampant in his region, often passing power against the meters.
He said under the operation, his office has collected 86m/- from the indebted customers.
“We have inspected more than 4,700 houses in Ilala region from which we have arrested 51 suspects for questioning by the police. We have also discovered 21 illegal power lines and during this period of inspection we have raised 86m/- from our debtors,” he said.
Nangali also said in Ilala region, they have strategies aimed at curbing illegal use of electricity. He named some of the strategies as removal of conventional meters and replace them with Luku meters with Geographical Position Service (GPS) code net.
Meanwhile, a similar operation conducted on Monday and yesterday saw over 20 people with illegal power connections disconnected.
Kinondoni North Region Tanesco manager Eng Christopher Said said four people out of 21 were taken to police because their offences were serious ones.
He said the Kinondoni region exercise was aimed at identifying unfaithful customers who bar the power firm from achieving its goals including, to reach majority of the country’s population.
Kinondoni North region Tanesco manager Eng Christopher Masasi has said that the exercise started early at Mwnanyamala area where they expected to inspect 100 meters.
According to him, the exercise came about following rumours that some customers have been abusing provided meters and by passed power.
He called upon customers to cooperate with the team for their benefits instead of running away from their houses.
Regional Manager for Dar es Salaam, Mtwara and Lindi zones said the operation was continuous and that though it will take sometime, it will reach all people.