Msunduzi still has a long way to go

2014-03-24 00:00

Quick sinkhole repair

Photographer Shan Pillay managed to get this photograph of a huge sinkhole that appeared at the corner of Ohrtmann and Bhambata roads in Mountain Rise due to a burst water main on Saturday morning. He said the municipality was quick to respond and the road was repaired that same afternoon.

Job half done

Di Webber thanks the Parks Department for responding to her previous request on February 3 to mow the verges alongside the roads in Hayfields, Cleland as well as along Boshoff Street and Murray Road.

However, she asks, “why were the weeds [nearly a metre high] in the gutters of those same roads not removed, while the men were busy in the area? The same goes for the litter now exposed and left behind! Please can a system be put in place, to keep our suburbs clean and tidy”.

The jury is still out

Both Witness Warriors and Msunduzi Speaker Babu Baijoo got involved in this issue, where a section of pavement dug up in Church Street had not been replaced, leading to people stumbling and falling and shop owners having reached the end of their tether.

Rashid Khan said many elderly people walking in the area had fallen and he was worried that somebody could be fatally injured.

Speaker Baijoo had also alerted officials to the problem and forwarded Witness Warriors the e-mail he had sent: “I visited Deluxe Fabric in Church St, Community Blds, Cnr Church and Thomas Streets.”

The pavement on Church Street in front of the shop was dug up months ago to repair a water pipe and has not been rehabilitated. The place is not only a mess, but is also a huge risk to public safety.

Thanks to Baijoo, we have learnt that the relevant department had sorted all its paperwork and ordered the necessary material ordered, work should commence by next Tuesday if all goes well and weather permitting.

A tired old story

It is worth telling Sandesh Singh’s story because it echos many others with billing problems who are sent from one department to another.

Perhaps residents with problems could write an affidavit to a review panel that is made up with different sections involved with billing, like the meter-reading section, electricity and accounts.

Singh wrote: “After more than 15 visits to your offices at 333 Church Street and Havelock Road, I have been asked to raise a dispute to have my account resolved.

“To give you an overview of what transpired for the last year and a half so that we have an understanding:

“December 2011 — December 2012 my house was under renovation which was approved by the planning department

“In January 2013, I received my first bill since returning to the property which was for more than four times my normal bill.

“When I verified the readings, both my water and electricity reading was exaggerated, the electricity more so by almost 10 000 KW.

“After disputing this and paying R2 000 a month until this was resolved, my light was disconnected in March 2013.

“I came back to your offices in Church Street from enquiries and I was sent to meter readings (Bhoopath Panday) from meter readings. I was then sent to credit control (Sumenthree Govender) who raised a query on my account with an instruction not to disconnect. Months passed and it was still not resolved even after seeing Bhoopath Panday almost monthly with pictures of the actual readings.

“This year, Havelock Road was instructed to remove the meter and replace with a digital reader, which was fitted by a gentlemen by the name of Kooba. He said he was instructed by Steven at Havelock Road.

“At the time of removing the meter my reading was sitting at 46 771, but the account came with a meter reading of 59 000!

“I went through and saw Steven at Havelock Road who said he cannot help and I needed to see credit control. Once there, I was asked to go and see a Mr Maharaj at first floor who then advised that I raise this dispute!

“I have checked the new digital reader after exactly one month and the consumption with usage of aircon, etc. was 458 kW. Note that when I renovated I used LED lighting/solar geyser and a gas stove, so my consumption should not be estimated over a 1 000 KW a month!!!”

After sending his query to Witness Warriors, Singh received a response from the municipality thanking him for his patience and saying that he will get a response in “due course”.

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