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Perceptions of service delivery challenges faced by Centlec in the Free State province, South Africa.

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Communities in urban areas rely on effective provision of services that range from water, roads maintenance, health, education and electricity provision. The study centres on Centlec, a hundred percent company owned by the Mangaung Metro, charged with the responsibility to provide electricity to the surrounding local municipalities of Mangaung, Matsopa and Kopanong. The purpose of the study was to explore the service delivery perceptions of the communities following persistent load shedding across the communities, which were deemed to be beyond the national electricity crisis. The study employed a mixed methodology where heads of household units were surveyed while managers of the respective municipalities were interviewed. A sample of 250 households were clustery selected with the finale participants randomly selected from each cluster. The respective managers were purposively selected. The study revealed that the electricity provision challenges in the respective communities were severe and peculiar to Centlec as they were not associated with the current national electricity generation crisis. The study also revealed that there was lack of managerial and leadership capacity to effectively manage the utility provider. Further, funding, failure to manage the various stakeholder and aging infrastructure exacerbated the electricity provision challenge. In the overall, failure to provide adequate electricity affected the local business growth that could have sustained the economy of the respective municipalities through employment creation. The study recommended an establishment of an Electricity Provision Task Team to spearhead efforts towards effective electricity provision. The study recommended that similar studies be conducted in other state owned electricity entities to establish if they experience similar challenges.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.