No money for light bulbs

2010-03-28 10:34

Upington – The municipality of Philipstown in the Northern Cape could be the first in South Africa to face charges in a criminal court due to poor service delivery.

Fed-up residents recently laid two charges of fraud against the Renosterberg municipality with police.
Philipstown is part of the municipality.

According to the Philipstown Ratepayers Association, this drastic step was taken after residents could no longer watch the collapse of the town, which allegedly started when the ANC took control of it four years ago.

The municipality, which is situated about 55km from De  Aar, could collapse within one month as it, among others:

  • Has no money for fuel for service vehicles
  • Has no money to buy bulbs for street lamps
  • Has no firefighting services
  • Regularly cuts the town’s water
  • Allows potholes to worsen and does not look after historic buildings
  • Does not pay its electricity account
  • Has no welfare services
The municipal manager said, however, that service delivery was a priority and that the ratepayers were being racist.

Municipal manager Mzamo Mtubu said there was an action plan to fix matters at the municipality.

He said faulty accounts had been sent out due to a new computer system. He admitted that the municipality, like many others, had financial problems.