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Mayor Kaunda commits to responding to ratepayers in 14 days

Date: 2023-08-15 08:52:05

Mayor Kaunda commits to responding to ratepayers in 14 days

EThekwini Mayor Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda met with the Westville Ratepayers Association on 10 August as part of a series of engagements he has embarked on with eThekwini ratepayers. Mayor Kaunda committed to responding to the ratepayers’ grievances within 14 days after the meeting.

FOLLOWING the successful first leg of a series of consultations with ratepayers that was held at Westville Civic Centre on 10 August, eThekwini Mayor Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda has committed to responding to grievances within 14 days.

Speaking during a meeting with the Westville Ratepayers Association, Mayor Kaunda said the Municipality had prepared a progress report but because the association submitted another memorandum, they decided to put the report aside. “We agreed that we are not going to table the progress report since they have submitted another memorandum, we needed time to deal with the new issues that they are raising now and we are going to incorporate them in our report when meet with them again in the next 14 days,” said Mayor Kaunda.

He emphasised that before Council takes a decision on the amount of tariffs to be charged, the Municipality embarks on extensive consultations with all key stakeholders. A similar process was undertaken during April and May this year, which resulted in some of the tariff increases being revised, said the Mayor. Mayor Kaunda said while the Municipality acknowledges residents’ frustrations about service delivery lapses, ratepayers are cautioned about the risks of withholding Municipal payments and instead, paying monies into trust accounts or into accounts of other structures. “If people are not paying, the Municipality will continue to implement its Credit Control measures as allowed for by the law.

This includes the levying of interest on overdue accounts and disconnection of services. Should a resident decide to sell a property, there will be challenges with issuing a rates clearance certificate. When the property owner dies, a rates boycott could present challenges in winding up an estate. It is for this reason that we urge residents to continue paying their Municipal bills,” said Kaunda. He added that where there are genuine financial difficulties with payment, residents can visit any Sizakala Centre to make payment arrangements, in terms of the City’s Credit Control Policy, that are more affordable. “We can only fix these service delivery challenges if we all work together. As we speak, the turnaround strategy we are implementing on waste management is beginning to yield positive results,” said Mayor Kaunda.