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ANC, mayors meet to discuss billing

Feb 02 2011 16:03 Sapa

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Johannesburg - The ANC in Gauteng will meet the 14 mayors in the province to discuss potholes, billing problems and flood damage, a spokesperson confirmed on Wednesday.

The meeting will take place on Thursday, days before the Independent Electoral Commission's first voter registration drive for the coming local government elections.

Gauteng ANC spokesperson Dumisa Ntuli said the auditor general's report on municipal financial management and delays in approval of "development applications" would be discussed.

The ANC also wanted feedback on plans to deal with the billing crisis.

This comes after a meeting of the ruling party's provincial executive committee.

Last week, Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo said there was "no crisis" in billing for rates and utilities in the country's economic hub.

However, many of the city's customers disagree, after receiving exorbitant bills that they say do not reflect true consumption, and after unfair disconnections.

Ntuli said the ANC agreed there was no crisis because the city had a 95% "pay rate", but it also agreed there were "a few glitches in the system" where officials were not doing their jobs.

"For example, the system will tell you if a person has been wrongly billed and it must be investigated, but the officials continue to bill the people. So, it's a man-made problem, not a system problem and the leadership will deal with that," he said.

In a later statement, Ntuli said: "The ANC Gauteng is strengthening measures to assist municipalities to deal better with issues of service and development in line with the ANC vision. The ANC takes seriously all the issues of billing because they affect development and investment."

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