Rates forum aims to sign up 10?000 petitioners

2010-10-18 00:00

ALMOST 600 signatures were collected at Hayfields Mall on Saturday in a petition launched by the Msunduzi Rates Forum (MRF) over various concerns with the Msunduzi Municipality.

Despite the rainy weather, MRF assistant Ashin Singh said, they averaged 200 signatures per hour in the three hours on site. The residents who signed complimented the forum for “taking a stand” against the municipality, he added.

Singh said residents from various racial groups told them they were “fed up” with the municipality and that something has to give.

He said some of the complaints levelled against the municipality during the signing include the impolite manner with which some telephone operators at muncipal offices handle calls from residents and the massive deposits that residents are forced to pay if they are a few days late in settling their water and electricity bills.

With 3 000 signatures already in the bag, Singh said, the forum is targeting 10 000 names, and it expects to reach this milestone in about three weeks’ time.

Once these signatures have been collected, they will be forwarded to the municipality.

If they are not dealt with within a certain time, Singh added, the MRF will then seek legal opinion as to whether a court order can be granted in order to allow rates payable to the municipality to be deposited into a court-approved trust fund. This, he added, has been the case in North West province.

Said Singh: “A number of advocates have volunteered their efforts and quite a few magistrates have come out in support by signing the petition.”

He urged residents who want to sign the petition to phone 033 391 5161.

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