Residents west of Pretoria and in other townships are expressing grievances over what they perceive as targeted municipal bill estimations. The Finance MMC, Peter Sutton, announced intensified efforts to issue more accurate bills, citing the resort to estimations when workers faced resident resistance. Sutton highlighted incidents where cooperation was lacking, leading to the city billing customers through estimations. Residents argue that the exercise unfairly victimises the poor and that bills continue to rise monthly, causing financial strain, especially for those living on government grant money.
Sutton emphasised the importance of meter readings for accurate billing, assuring residents of privacy and safety. However, residents, particularly in townships, believe the exercise aims to burden the less fortunate further. Some argue that the bills are unaffordable, impacting their ability to buy necessities like bread and medication. The Lotus Gardens, Atteridgeville, and Saulsville Civic Association (Lasca) Chairperson, Tshepho Mahlangu, views estimated bills as a consequence of a failed multi-coalition government, accusing the municipality of deliberate looting from the poorest. Lasca has been battling the metro over various issues, including estimated bills.
Residents continue to criticise the billing system, asserting that it targets the poor and leads to financial struggles, affecting their ability to afford basics and causing psychological distress within the community. The sentiments reflect a broader dissatisfaction with the billing process and the perceived impact on residents’ daily lives.
Picture: X / Rekord
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