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How much more needs to go wrong before we can admit that the municipal government model has never worked for a large portion of municipalities and never will?
Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane said on Monday she planned to cut bulk-water supplies to at least 30 errant municipalities on December 8. Water debt from municipalities has reached R10.7bn, with 73% of this having been outstanding for longer than 60 days.
Processes to recover the money, including legal action, that started two years ago have not been able to stem the rising tide. Mokonyane now says she will start the cut-offs. She has also put in motion an intergovernmental process with the Treasury to compel it to withhold equitable share grant from municipalities that have not paid their debt.
It is the same story with electricity, only defaulting on Eskom accounts has been going on for much longer. Municipalities owe the power utility R10bn and Eskom says it has no plans to write off any of this. Cut-offs of...
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