‘Address debt’

2019-02-27 06:01
Mmusi Maimane, DA leader, presents a memorandum to Oupa Khoabane (right, Free State MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs) on Thursday (21/02). Photo: Mlungisi Louw

Mmusi Maimane, DA leader, presents a memorandum to Oupa Khoabane (right, Free State MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs) on Thursday (21/02). Photo: Mlungisi Louw

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Free State municipalities are the biggest defaulters of all ANC-led municipalities when it comes to paying Eskom bills.

This is according to Mmusi Maimane, DA leader, who presented a memorandum to the provincial government leadership on Thursday (21/02).

Maimane has urged Free State Premier Sisi Ntombela to take immediate corrective steps against municipalities owing Eskom.

“Maluti A Phofung, Matjha­beng and Ngwathe owe Eskom R2,809 and R1,815 billion and R940 million respectively. They are the municipalities most indebted to Eskom in South Africa, as at November last year,” said Maimane.

He has called on Ntombela to implement three practical steps against municipalities as solution to the pile of debt they owe.

“Take urgent action with consequence management for managers in these municipalities and others that are not paying and do not meet payment targets for outstanding payments to Eskom.

“Institute a name and shame campaign for non-payers of electricity by releasing the names of the main offenders that are non-paying to these municipalities’ websites and local papers to make sure the community knows who is skipping on payment. This would be similar to the water saving name and shame campaign in the DA-led City of Cape Town,” said Maimane.

Maimane has further called on government to take immediate action against municipalities in the province which have failed to pay more than R5 billion in bills owed to Eskom.

Oupa Khoabane, MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, said the provincial government would respond to the memorandum of grievances that the DA leader presented.

He said issues raised by Maimane were issues that the provincial government and department were already dealing with. He said the problem with municipalities was that each of them had a unique problem.

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