Durban revolts: Civic groups launch eThekwini rates boycott in what the city calls a ‘mob mentality’

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Civic bodies and ratepayers’ associations in eThekwini Metro are taking the fight for basic services to the city, saying they are boycotting rate payments until they are catered for.

The charge is being led by the Westville Ratepayers Association (WRA), who is working around municipal legal frameworks to ensure proper processes to re-establish consistent services.

The association has refrained from paying rates from 31 July and instead transferred funds into one bank account.

The city has hit back at the WRA, but is yet to meet with it despite numerous requests.

In response to the boycott, the city said it would institute credit control measures and described the move as “mob mentality” and illegal despite the WRA abiding by legal measures.

WRA chairperson Asad Gaffar said the city cannot cut off electricity or water supply to residents for non-payment, adding the WRA would go to the High Court for all residents in the city once a notice is served for intent to disconnect any services.

Instead of paying the city, funds will be safely transferred into an account, he said, as the dispute continues.

The dispute emerged after eThekwini proposed an 18% electricity hike, which the National Energy Regulatory Authority (Nersa) shot down, limiting the city to 15.1%, a figure that Gaffar and the WRA say is unjustified.

Read the full article on the News24 here.

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