By Kuzeeko Tjitemisa
WINDHOEK – Residents of Grysblok, Katutura are criticising the City of Windhoek (CoW) decision to offer them compensation ranging from N$500 to N$3 000 after their electrical appliances were damaged by a power surge.
The massive power surge that occurred late in April 2014 saw more than 100 households counting losses as a number of electrical appliances were damaged beyond repair.
Residents say the current offer is inadequate to meet the expenses incurred from the electrical fault.
Letters in New Era’s possession, delivered to residents by the municipality, showed the municipality offering homeowners between N$500 and N$3 000 in compensation for damages.
But the letters have left residents even more confused about the interest of the authorities in their well-being.
“It was terrible,” said Meundju Tjingaete, a Grysblok resident, speaking about the power surge last April.
“More than 100 residents lost computers, televisions and DVDs and many other electrical appliances but now we don’t have money to buy new ones. It is a lot of things,” stated Tjingaete.
“I have lost close to N$30 000 but the municipality is only offering me N$3 000, what can I do with that money?” he asked.
“This is peanuts, what I can buy with N$3 000, it is not even enough to buy a microwave or a laptop,” he complained bitterly.
“That is not money. Each person lost goods of up to N$20 000 or N$30 000. People lost washing machines and fridges,” he charged.
Rudolf Kaseraera said the “N$3 000 the municipality says they are going to give us, we don’t want that because that doesn’t make any sense. With N$ 3000 you cannot buy much.”
He added: “The municipality thinks that since it was ‘Januworry’ I would accept the offer.”
Samuel Tjirimuje, another resident, said the power surge “affected me a lot and it now still inconveniences me. We lost almost everything because most of our electrical appliances were on at the time. We will need to buy a lot of things.”
According to Tjigaete a few days after the surge in April, the municipality did an assessment on damages and they agreed to come up with an amicable solution.
“But now they are offering us peanuts – this is adding insult to injury, we will leave no stone unturned,” said Tjingaete.
He said residents were required to submit a list of their destroyed items to the municipal officials.
Contacted for comment yesterday the municipal spokesperson Joshua Amukugo promised to reply to questions but he had not by the time of going to print.