Rustenburg - Minerals and Energy Minister Dipuo Peters on Thursday encouraged the community of Seraleng, just outside Rustenburg in the North West, to actively get involved in projects that would earn themselves an income.
Speaking during a visit in the area as part of government's Public Participation Programme, which kicked off on Monday, giving citizens an opportunity to directly interact with government, Peters encouraged the local community to work towards improving their lives.
"You cannot only depend on child support grants, you must do something to improve your lives. You cannot depend on hand-outs," she said.
The minister had earlier connected the community to the national electricity grid where she said the community must be vigilant about cable theft.
"Imagine if someone is being operated on in hospital and the theft of cables takes place, that means the life of that person is at risk," Peters said.
"Theft of cables destroys our economy," the minister added.
She said the thieves were often known to residents and they had a responsibility to report them to the police.
Minister Peters said a lot of money which could be used for other important things is spent on replacing stolen cables.