Major campaign launched to recover R13.1-billion in municipal debt

KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Nomusa Dube-Ncube  on Friday, 9 March, together with KZN Mayors in eDumbe (Paulpietersburg) municipality launched a massive campaign to recover debts owed by businesses and consumers to the province’s municipalities.

The financial viability of municipalities is being threatened by the failure of stakeholders to honour their civic duties which enable municipalities to keep their services going.

Municipalities, such as eDumbe and four others in KZN, have recently been threatened with disconnections by Eskom due to non-payment which arises from the fact that businesses and consumers are perennially defaulting on their payments for services.

This state of affairs in having a negative impact on municipalities’ ability to maintain their existing infrastructure and install new facilities due to the persistent deficit in revenue collection.

The “#Your Levies Change Lives Campaign” will see defaulters, whether in business or the state, being visited by dignitaries with a demand for outstanding payments owed to municipalities.

The campaign involved road blocks, disconnections and engagements with communities. Some of the focus was also placed on government debts, including debts owed to municipalities by government departments, state employees, councillors etc.

Based on the audited financial results, municipalities in KZN are collectively owed R13.1-billion which can be broken down as follows:

· Household debts = R7.9-billion (60.43%);

· Commercial debts (debt owed by businesses) = R3.5-billion (26.8%);

· Government debts = R735-million (5.6%); and

· Other debts (such as traffic fines) = 413-million (3.15%).

For more information contact KZN Cogta Spokesperson Lennox Mabaso on 0828842403 0r Msawakhe Mayisela on 0609664220