#TshwaneYaTima campaign target top owing customers

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By Dimakatso Modipa

City of Tshwane officials cut off services at the private accommodations photo by Dimakatso Modipa
City of Tshwane officials cut off services at the private accommodations photo by Dimakatso Modipa

City of Tshwane Ya Tima campaign has rolled out across the city of Tshwane on Tuesday morning.

The credit control action is part of the #TshwaneYaTima campaign aimed at recouping R23, 3 billion it is owed by various customers.

10 teams of officials have been dispatched to different areas across the city to disconnect electricity to the unpaying customers.

The municipality is currently focusing on 1500 high consuming residential and business customers whose water and electricity services will be disconnected due to accumulated arrear debt.

The campaign was led by MMC of Human Settlement Ofentse Madzebatela, MMC of finance Jacqui Uys, and City manager Johana Mettler joined by the team of officials including Tshwane Metro police and electricity team.

The officials started to disconnect at Acardia a SAPS own building, they disconnected a block of unit that owe city close to million rand.

The second building was a Sun Acardia complex that owed R3, 9 million rand.

The third building was a private accommodation that owes city R2, 7 million rand.

The Hotel Sentinel a student accommodation was also cut off as they owe city R2, 5 million rand.

“Our focus in on our top 1500 owing debtors which owes R6, 2 million we currently have track team out in the fields.

We often find that people don’t understand how the account works and how disconnection work,” said MMC for finance Jacqui Uys.

MMC Uys said the city is planning to recoup 23 billion rand and there is no reason that people do not settle their municipality bill.

“We are asking people if they are unsure and can’t afford the bill to approach the city and take responsibility of their debt and make payment arrangements and if it is the case of home or in a poor community, they should ask city for POP or approach city for affordability,” MMC Uys explain further.

City of Tshwane officials disconnecting services at SAPS owned building in a unit photo by Dimakatso Modipa
City of Tshwane officials disconnecting services at SAPS owned building in a unit photo by Dimakatso Modipa

Uys explain that we have disconnected the complex with various tenants because landlord did not pay municipality bill and now the tenants are affected because the landlord owes city R3, 9 million rands.

“The landlord got a responsibility towards tenants.

The landlord gets the rents and need to pay it over to the city.

As city we have a responsibility to collect the money in order to be able to deliver services to the people who live in the city of Tshwane,” she said.

MMC further said we are focusing on prepaid meters.

We have also made changes from the way we issue job card for disconnection.

Previously we focused on everybody who is on areas and now we are focusing on the top owing clients.

“Let’s not spend resources on those who owes smaller amount but let’s put our biggest resources to those who owe the city the most amount of money so we can optimally cash on the debtor’s book.

“We are calling on residents to make arrangements for something they can afford, and they can negotiate the payment plan as well but for business it works differently,” Uys speaking to media during the #Tshwaneyatimecampaign.

She is calling on to come and makes arrangements for something that they can afford and can take control of their debts.

We are going to the communities across Tshwane for billing days, to help residents to understand their bill, enquiry their bills and make arrangements.

“There are people who want to take city of Tshwane seriously, but it is a looting and criminality that got us to the point where we are now.

By taking hands and coming together and said we want to take control what we used and what we owe municipality only by that we will be able to change the city around,” MMC Uys concluded.

MMC for Human Settlement Ofentse Madzebatela said before they are disconnecting, the person is told how much they are owing, and how much they supposed to be paying, get warning letters and final demand.

When the municipality officials come, they will produce a job card, when a job card is issued and it will give city of Tshwane officials access to the building or to the property and failure to do so, Metro police will come in and will forcefully enforce by laws, and they will come in and be able to implement what is able to be implemented.

“People are not supposed to put their own locks on the electricity boxes and as city we have our own locks.

When we find other people locks, we will cut them off and we will put back the locks of the city and failing that, if this continues, people will get fined to that effect,” said MMC for human settlement Madzebatela.

Madzebatela said Tshwane Ya Tima campaign continues to be a very portable role campaign for this government.

The mayor continues to speak about our first priority is to rescue the finances of the city.

“Tshwane Ya Tima is at the top of priorities, and it is ensuring that we collect all the money that is owe to us.

We want to get this 1500 customers who owe the city millions and we will make sure that they pay what they owe to the city, so we can be able to rescue the finances of the city.

We want to rescue the financial status of the city,” said MMC Madzebatela.

“We had this issue for a long time, and we went to their offices, write emails and they promised to come and intervene, but they never did.

We are surprised to see them here today disconnecting services and I hope since they are here the matter will be resolved now,” said Van der Merwe.

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