News24

DA calls for resignations over billing

2011-02-04 20:43

Johannesburg - The Democratric Alliance caucus leader in the city of Johannesburg, Vasco da Gama, and DA finance spokesperson councillor Patrick Atkinson said in a joint statement that Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo and committee member for finance councillor Parks Tau should resign immediately for trying to cover up the city's billing crisis.

They said: "Masondo and Tau have presided over what is fast becoming one of the most serious municipal crises facing the people of Johannesburg.

"Following the shocking revelations, Masondo and...Tau should resign immediately."

The DA accused Masondo and Tau for "not being candid" with council or councillors regarding the full extent of the problems faced by the city and said their "misplaced arrogance and "cool indifference" added to the plight of Johannesburg residents.

"They have repeatedly attempted to cover up the severity of the problem, setting deadlines for the resolution of this issue and missing these time and again."

Atkinson said that January ranked as possibly one of the most unfortunate months for the city's finances.

The DA had also apparently become aware of the billing saga last year, and had made efforts to meet Tau, but failed, he said.

"The DA introduced an urgency motion at the last council meeting of 2010. This was refused by the ANC administration as being not sufficiently urgent.

"The council subsequently disconnected over 40 000 households, many on the basis of incorrect billing. Many ratepayers have received grossly inflated bills and the city has demanded payment under threat of disconnection. This is pure extortion.

"Johannesburg has seen a significant slippage in its credit rating under the stewardship of Masondo and Tau. Another year of this toxic duo could have a fatal effect on the city."

Liquidation

The Mail & Guardian reported on Friday that Johannesburg's billing problem started five years ago, when a R208m tender to upgrade the system was awarded to "an inexperienced company whose directors have a record of high-level involvement with local and national government links and ANC politicians".

The newspaper reported that the city awarded the contract to Masana Technologies.

The contract price expanded to R496m and when the country cancelled it in September 2009, with R156m of the work unfinished, Masana went into liquidation.

Subcontractors, Dimension Date and IBM had to take over. This cost the city a further R306m, the report said, but the city has denied this, stating that it cost R170m more.
Masondo said at a media conference held by the Gauteng provincial ANC on Thursday that the billing problem could take up to two years to sort out.

He said that the city would continue cutting off services to those who did not pay their electricity bills, but would not "wrongfully" cut power.

Masondo said "significant progress" had been made in dealing with the situation.

He earlier drew widespread criticism for saying that the problem did not constitute a crisis.


Comments
  • Kyle_logan - 2011-02-04 20:53

    Not only him... the entire ANC goverment must resign

  • Mundu - 2011-02-04 20:55

    Ha! they won't fire them, they will be promoted up the ANC ranks, watch this spot.

  • Zinki - 2011-02-04 20:57

    Banana republic!!!

      Heidi - 2011-02-05 14:29

      my exact thoughts......i feel srry for u joburgers.

      Annemarie White - 2013-04-10 20:22

      Sommer the whole fruit salad

  • ant177@24.com - 2011-02-04 21:01

    How will we ever get those monkeys out a tree. I wonder???

      THE PUNISHER - 2011-02-05 07:43

      A 50 BMG sniper rifle will blow those monkeys to pieces

  • JudithNkwe - 2011-02-04 21:06

    No knowledge, no skills and living in fairy land - very sad that we have been the people who have experienced such incompetence. Masondo and Tau should pay for the disaster out of their own pockets. Oh they can ask other ANC councillors to contribute since they also have given very little service to their constituencies

  • Dave - 2011-02-04 21:09

    People, we need a class action law suit against these guys, this has gone way way way too far, this is sheer gross negligence at its worst

      Kyle_logan - 2011-02-04 21:16

      that means suing the goverment... look who well that worked when Zuma was changed

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:22

      Kyle, mate we gotta do someting...my electricity has gone from R600 a month to R6000, I havent received a water bill in over year..I spend more time on the phone to useless call centre operators than I should...no one cares

      Chibuli - 2011-02-04 21:43

      I agree - South Africans must STOP being so damn accommodating of ANC incompetence. They are TOTALLY USELESS - and MUST be thrown out. DA, we look to YOU for leadership - no-one else cares!

      Rev. H-Cubed - 2011-02-05 01:02

      The fundamental problem with this course is that, in effect, we would be suing ourselves. The only money the authorities have came from us to start with. We need to rid ourselves of these parasites. If every unhappy citizen uses their vote to send a clear message to the incumbents, I have no doubt there will be a shift to the positive, because the unhappy outnumber the happy by a massive margin. Please, my fellow citizens, do not be lead by more hollow promises and procrastination. Democracy demands that we allow a fresh set of hands an opportunity to serve us as we should be served. With the right skills in the right place, we can do much better than we are now.

  • Dave - 2011-02-04 21:17

    Will the Da please do SOMETHING to sort this out...this has almost bankrupted me in receiving a bill that was 1000% more that usual....I cant afford legal assistance, will someone help us?

      1gascan - 2011-02-05 07:01

      Heya Dave - the DA are doing what they can - check the article... they made the call for the resignations. Unfortunately, there is only so much the DA and other parties can do until the chokehold of this ANC party is released! We as the citizens must stand up and boycott the system. Let everyone NOT pay, or march into town (blacks, whites, coloureds, indians) and show that we mean business. Enough is Enough!

      Valkerie - 2011-02-05 11:18

      Dave, register to vote and make your voice heard. I know I am. Good luck!

      BigD - 2011-03-06 08:01

      The DA can do nothing about this problem. The DA can ask for whatever they want but it is like farting into the wind. They have no power.

  • Ed - 2011-02-04 21:21

    It is my understanding that the Communist Party (Russian and Chinese) were firm supporters and inspirers of the ANC. Perhaps they should be inspired the same way the Chinese deal with these matters: EXECUTION

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:27

      Please dont tempt me!

  • Kyle_logan - 2011-02-04 21:27

    @Dave, it wont let me reply to you... dude that is harsh, you are right something has to be done and done soon.....we can only hope the ANC get a kick in the arse at the next election!

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:38

      Kyle, we both know that aint gonna happen dont we? They even restrict voting registration to specific weekends...who in JHB is gonna get there arse out and register...you know the stupid thing is I'm Amercian, and been here since 65....why the hell do I stay?

      Rev. H-Cubed - 2011-02-05 01:11

      Guys, it happens at the ballot. We must encourage and assist participation however we can. I reckon every one of us knows at least one person who "won't vote 'cos it won't help". Start there. If you can convince that friend to cast a vote, you have doubled your power to make a difference. You do not have to lobby for any party, but we must all lobby that voters perform their democratic duty, and be counted.

  • ProudofPink - 2011-02-04 21:30

    Amos Masondo is a disgrace! If Jhb is supposed to be a 'world-class' city, then how come we have a mayor who is not only ignorant, but also can't even speak properly?

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:39

      World class city se voet, world class dump more like it

      Chibuli - 2011-02-04 21:48

      Yes - Third Rate African City! Just look at the state of it!

  • Benzo - 2011-02-04 21:35

    Agree with Dave. DA could take the lead in a class action to get these clowns where it hurts. There should be some legal means other than politically asking for their resignation. DA? Want to win an election? Here is your chance on a golden plate.

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:45

      100% agree, thanks...there HAs to be a way to stop this mess we are....we all rant and rage but us as individuals are really powerless.. I wish i had the damn money

  • SimonP - 2011-02-04 21:36

    The world looks on and is laughing its arse of at an impending African disaster. The only people that cant see it is the ANC. I think a serious dose of redeployment is needed, ANC in opposition! Now that would be funny to see how quickly the knoives would come out.

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:48

      But we as citizens have to do something dont we? Yes collectively we are the worlds murders, rapeists, theives etc, but unless we do something., whats gonna change....I wish i knew how

      Shadoz - 2011-02-05 10:24

      Dave he doesn't pay for his power we do remember.

  • Molefe - 2011-02-04 21:45

    There seems to be double standards here,when the ANC Cadre led Municipality is at fault they all should resign but when the DeZille led Municipality arranges open toilets for the Black Community it is so fine.This is not so on

      SimonP - 2011-02-04 21:50

      You bloody idiot, you have no idea what the "open toilet" issue was all about. You listen to ANC rhetoric but not to facts. You are part of the problem.

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:52

      oh please, go read the facts before commenting about the damn toilet saga...and we are discusing the gross incompetence of the city of JHB...just wait to you get your bill

      SimonP - 2011-02-04 22:00

      The country is crumbling around these idiots ears and all they can say is " ablack man can not be racist" and "open toilets" 1000 times.

      ProudofPink - 2011-02-04 22:07

      Ditto to everything SimonP and Dave have said. Try and get your head out of indoctrination mode and see the facts as they are. When your wonderful ANC was still in control of the Western Cape, why didn't the ANC do anything? Why are these people still living in shacks? Why has the ANC stolen the money that could have built them houses? If their houses are made of zinc, why should the toilets be made of bricks?

      SimonP - 2011-02-04 22:23

      Molefe, you have internet right, why dont you research the toilet saga and then comment. I dont expect an answer from you as like all ANC you are ignorant and only want to see and hear what your corrupt ANC tell you. Come on man grow a set and wake the hell up.

      SimonP - 2011-02-04 22:32

      @Proudopink, a very good point, how long were the ANC in charge and there wre NO toilets at all? The DA installed the toilets the ANC failed to install. Any comment Moleftie

      Rev. H-Cubed - 2011-02-05 01:20

      If you can show one example of a citizen being billed R 200 MILLION for a toilet, I may consider that you have a point Molefe, but we all know that no such example exists. There is no "double standard". The comparison has no merit.

      Shadoz - 2011-02-05 10:31

      Molefe selective news reading is almost the same and if not more dangerous than porpaganda. Other people who love propaganda where Hitler, bob mugabe, Mathieu Ngirumpatse, Stalin. so "blind man" you can keep following your ideals or change for the better.

      Gazza Boy - 2011-02-05 10:43

      You are one of those monkeys that should climb back in the tree.

  • Chibuli - 2011-02-04 21:46

    DA, don't call for resignations... institute a class action. Be proactive! Show us your leadership abilities! DO SOMETHING POSITIVE! The ANC MUST be taught a lesson. We cannot take any more of this lethargy!

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:53

      Yep, gonna google the names of the DA mentioned, and mail them...maybe if we all do...come on...

  • Snucky@24.com - 2011-02-04 21:50

    Why do we beat about the bush - we try to be polite in our criticism. the people in charge are uneducated, its as simple as that - its not all their fault. Due to apartheid they just simply do not know what to do. They bluster, they bluff, they call in the race card when they have no other option. It wont change unfortunately. We have a choice - work and try to educate them - or leave the Country. Its bloody frustrating - but you have the choice in your hands. I don't care how much they earn, they know deep in their hearts they are failing. Its hurts them, as much as us. Up to you then?

      Dave - 2011-02-04 21:58

      Do they really know? Do they really? If you have any kind of heart something would then make you stand up and say no...ut I cant see this...do they CARE? Not that i can see...

  • SimonP - 2011-02-04 22:07

    Dave here is what to do in my opinion. Call all the big legal firms and you may find one who will take it on as a no win no fee basis. No court could possibly find in favour of the city. The one problem is due to BEE deployment you may find no SA big law firm will take it on so maybe look abroad

      Dave - 2011-02-04 22:15

      In the darkness that has descended on me...that aint gonna happen will it? i know all the legal firms, happened when i was retrenched, and remained unemployed for 3 years. a qualified CA for 25 years an international finance director and i couldnt find a job...BEE whatever, my experience means nothing in this country...and now i sit in darkness, go figure

  • Dave - 2011-02-04 22:07

    Too many vodkas that should have gone onto saving for my next electricty bill...can we at least agree that we will do something as individuals to stop this mess? G night folks, turning off the damn lights

  • Rick - 2011-02-04 22:53

    The ANC government can't manage sewerage; basic service delivery; or money; - they now want to manage our health. Please dear baby Jesus help us.

      SimonP - 2011-02-04 23:10

      The only thing they can manage is a piss up in a nightclub.

  • jhsteyn - 2011-02-05 00:55

    Every ANC POS counsel member should resign over this public fiasco out out of their own free will (that is, if they have at least or less than one ounce of decense integrity within themselves)because of this. If any of them were in a public company they would have have been FIRED a long time ago bur instead, they are promoted/redepoyed etc.just because they are are totally the average useless ANC POS cadres.....!!!!!

  • Sentor - 2011-02-05 07:06

    This statement by the DA just illustrates how useless the entire local government system is. The DA could not influence the situation therefore opposition supporters have had no effective represention for years. The City is an ANC dictatorship which protects widespread self enrichment and tender fraud. I would be more impressed if the DA called for decentralisation and privatisation of utilities. The City are in breach of numerous local legislation as well as tender regulations. Yet NOW with various entitites bankrupt and the City unable to bill and collect revenue effectively we hear the DA making statements. Sorry guys the party political system gives ratepayers no effective representation we need independent oversight. The system needs to change you cannot patch up a monilith like the Unicity and make it work just by changing the political party. For one thing fraud and corruption is endemic from top to bottom and useless staff are protected by a militant union.

  • coolwaynie - 2011-02-05 07:10

    In Africa no-one ever resigns in disgrace...it's unheard of. They have to literally be dragged from their chair kicking and screaming and tossed out the door.

  • Dugumeni - 2011-02-05 08:07

    It doesnt improve anything by firing this bumbling fool and his bunch of Village idiots.There are hundreds just as useless as him standing in line for his job.The ANC has made INCOMPETENCE an essential qualification for any Management position.Its a case of monkey see,monkey do.Boswel Wilkie circus are being challenged by this ANC Circus full of Clowns and guess what?They dont need any make up.

  • cvdmerwe - 2011-02-05 09:03

    1. What about those don't even receive an account for services? I'm trying for almost 15 months to get a bill for my two properties. 2. Why is this fiasco getting more attention than the Emergency Service Control Centres and Operational Services that can't cope with the demands of the city? 3. How did the City manage to get an award for their "Incompetencies"? 4. How was it possible for Masondo for even considering a price hike on rates, when the billing and the revenue collection is not not functioning? Was the objective to make-up for short fall by making those who pay to pay more? 5. Will the (250 000 plus)Zim people who have now become "legal" SA Citizens, now going to vote ANC in order to make-up for the supporters who have relised that their votes was actually wasted! 6. Will they payback their perfomance bonus? and resign without getting a golden handshake? I don't think so!!!! 7. If I want to sell my property...How long must I wait for a clearance certificate? 5 years? 2 years? or until a new government is in place? 8. Remember how the officials went on strike for better wages.. thus all supported by not trained, not answering the phone, not replying on any correspondance, not doing their work?

  • Radrodent - 2011-02-05 09:09

    Rad Rodent. I live in the Western Cape and what a pleasure to say that incorrect billing is practically unheard of. I feel for you okes up in Gauteng. Please guys, vote for the DA. It is your only hope.

  • jaycee - 2011-02-05 09:54

    Mosondo for the next ambassdor to Lesotho!

  • cvdmerwe - 2011-02-05 10:12

    1. What about those who don't even receive an account for services? I'm trying for almost 15 months to get a bill for my two properties. 2. Why is this fiasco getting more attention (and most probably money) than the Emergency Service Control Centres and Operational Services that can't cope with the demands of the city? 3. How did the City manage to get an award for their "In competencies"? 4. How was it possible for Masondo for even considering a price hike on rates, when the billing and the revenue collection is not functioning? Was the objective to make-up for short fall by making those who pay to pay more? 5. Are the (250 000 plus) Zim people who have now become "legal" SA Citizens, now going to vote ANC in order to make-up for the supporters who have realised that their votes was actually wasted! 6. Will they payback their performance bonuses received and held responsible for miss managing and negligence and as a result get fired without receiving a golden handshake? I don't think so!!!! 7. If I want to sell my property...How long must I wait for a clearance certificate? 5 years? 2 years? Or will it only be possible if “our” new government is in place? When I bought the latest property, it took eight months for them to issue a clearance certificate (Not because I’m white, it was because I’m lucky) and nobody was bothered or could understand about occupancy and other consequential cost as a result of their inability to issue the certificate. 8. Then whilst trying to deal with the “burning issue” of getting a bill for services... the officials went on strike for better wages.. Thus all supported by not being trained, not answering the phone, not replying on any correspondence and basically not doing their work? 9. Seeing the photo of Masondo in the newspaper his facial expression was that of an honest man and in his support, I could see he was telling the truth about the fact that he did not know about the crisis in the billing and revenue department, mainly because he simply did not know and if he did, he believed that without any interferences from the citizens and if ignored (the way government deals with stuff) the problem will go away in one or two years time and therefore his personal intervention or involvement is not required. 10. Maybe our highly placed and respected officials should read the newspapers instead of relying on the information provided by their trustworthy and loyal comrades, brothers and sisters. I therefore could write anything I want in this letter, knowing they will not read this and if they did.. who cares, the issues will go away in one or two years!

  • Shadoz - 2011-02-05 10:21

    why can't you jhb folks take to the streets? do what they doing in egypt. take it to the streets!!!!

      Chibuli - 2011-02-05 10:33

      Good idea!

  • cvdmerwe - 2011-02-05 10:28

    1. What about those who don't even receive an account for services? I'm trying for almost 15 months to get a bill for my two properties. 2. Why is this fiasco getting more attention (and most probably money) than the Emergency Service Control Centres and Operational Services that can't cope with the demands of the city? 3. How did the City manage to get an award for their "In competencies"? 4. How was it possible for Masondo for even considering a price hike on rates, when the billing and the revenue collection is not functioning? Was the objective to make-up for short fall by making those who pay to pay more? 5. Are the (250 000 plus) Zim people who have now become "legal" SA Citizens, now going to vote ANC in order to make-up for the supporters who have realised that their votes was actually wasted! 6. Will they payback their performance bonuses received and held responsible for miss managing and negligence and as a result get fired without receiving a golden handshake? I don't think so!!!! 7. If I want to sell my property...How long must I wait for a clearance certificate? 5 years? 2 years? Or will it only be possible if “our” new government is in place? When I bought the latest property, it took eight months for them to issue a clearance certificate (Not because I’m white, it was because I’m lucky) and nobody was bothered or could understand about occupancy and other consequential cost as a result of their inability to issue the certificate. 8. Then whilst trying to deal with the “burning issue” of getting a bill for services... the officials went on strike for better wages.. Thus all supported by not being trained, not answering the phone, not replying on any correspondence and basically not doing their work? 9. Seeing the photo of Masondo in the newspaper his facial expression was that of an honest man and in his support, I could see he was telling the truth about the fact that he did not know about the crisis in the billing and revenue department, mainly because he simply did not know and if he did, he believed that without any interferences from the citizens and if ignored (the way government deals with stuff) the problem will go away in one or two years time and therefore his personal intervention or involvement is not required. 10. Maybe our highly placed and respected officials should read the newspapers instead of relying on the information provided by their trustworthy and loyal comrades, brothers and sisters. I therefore could write anything I want in this letter, knowing they will not read this and if they did.. who cares, the issues will go away in one or two years!

      BigD - 2011-03-06 08:05

      Come on now, you have repeated yourself again. maybe you work for the billing department.

  • hardereen - 2011-02-05 10:29

    South Africa is a democracy. These people have been voted into power, because this is how they want to be governed... incompetently. Africans understand this and are comfortable with this and want this.

      Stofbolletji - 2011-02-05 14:14

      You are so right.They just say EISH and then it's viva ANC all over again..They love the disorganisation because then they are all on one flat level.

  • Stofbolletji - 2011-02-05 14:11

    A better example of the blind leading the blind surely does not exist.Hopefully those who received inflated bills or who's electricity were wrongly cut off are ANC supporters and hopefully they are now GATVOL and turn to the DA!

  • Charl Malan - 2013-04-10 14:09

    I feel sorry for the ratepayers of Jozi, thank god I live in Capetown

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