The Democratic Alliance (DA) has opposed the suggested 75% water tariff increase in uMgungundlovu District Municipality, KwaZulu-Natal.
The suggested 75% water tariff increase was presented at the budget steering and finance committees this week.
DA OPPOSES 75% WATER TARIFF INCREASE IN UMGUNGUNDLOVU
The DA in KZN said it is appalled by the suggested water tariff increase and that this is just a way to get residents to pay for the continued internal failures of the municipality.
The party said they will be appealing to KZN MEC of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), Sipho Hlomuka, to request his urgent intervention in this municipality.
The party also said the uMgungundlovu Municipality is clearly not able to provide the services and collect the revenue on behalf of cash-strapped residents.
“We are hopeful that the provincial government will see sense and protect residents from this unprecedented tariff increase.
“This is plain and simple abuse of residents who have no alternative to getting water supplied. A 75% increase in this economic climate is beyond belief. The well-known failures in the municipality, resulting in R1.2 billion in very old and uncollectable debts, is but one example that the municipality’s internal structures lack the capacity to do the job.”DA
A lot of this water is being used by residents where there is no political will to regularise and bill people. Some areas have a 0% collection rate where they are actually billed, reportedly.
The DA said this is unfair treatment of residents who do pay their accounts, for very obvious political gains.
“We cannot stand by and allow residents to be extorted in this manner. The municipality needs to take a fair and professional approach to the collection of debts in order to improve the 35% collection rate so that it can protect cash-strapped residents from exorbitant increases and realise the cash flow to run the municipality.”DA