Tshwane on drive to recover R10bn debt


Tshwane on drive to recover R10bn debt

Nomahlubi Jordaan | 2017-02-07 12:02:03.0

The City of Tshwane. File photo.

Image by: DUDU ZITHA

The City of Tshwane says it will prioritise “turning around” its current finances so it can provide services to residents.

Mayor Solly Msimanga said the city would increase its revenue by collecting the more than R10 billion it was owed for municipal services.

“The city will increase its current account payment levels. January payment levels were only at 85%. We will collect debt older than 30 days. Government departments owe R582m‚ businesses R1.6b and households R4.1b.

“Turning around the city’s finances is our apex priority so we can deal with the infrastructure the former administration made no provision for‚” said Msimanga at a media briefing on Tuesday. He said‚ for instance‚ there had been no preventative infrastucture maintenance on water supply equipment.

Msimanga was addressing the media on the financial position of the City of Tshwane‚ its financial performance and cash flows.

He said that while the Auditor-General’s report gave the previous African National Congress’s administration an unqualified report‚ the picture was not “rosy”.

“An unqualified audit means just that: no lies were told in the financial statements but rather the statements spoke the truth about a complete deficit in political and financial leadership which has led to the actual fiscal deficit that we sit with today.”

To put that into context‚ he said‚ a fraction of what was required was allocated for preventative maintenance of water infrastructure.

“For a metro this size it is almost criminal because that has real and meaningful impact on the city’s ability to deal speedily with water interruptions.

“This is indicative of the poor and irresponsible use of the city’s money by people too preoccupied with vanity projects such as botched city hall refurbishments‚” said Msimanga.

Msimanga said his administration would also deal with illegal electricity connections and land invasions. The plan was to develop illegally occupied land and to provide proper services. “We can only do that if people work with us.”

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