Fin24

SA households owe billions

2012-06-05 16:39

Cape Town - Almost two-thirds of the R76.6bn owed to South Africa's municipalities by consumers is owed by households, says National Treasury.

According to its Third Quarter Local Government Section 71 Report released on Tuesday, a "certain percentage" of this is probably irrecoverable.

The report, which deals with local government revenue and spending for the period July 1 2011 to March 31 this year, finds that the economic slowdown and "substantial increases" in electricity tariffs are starting to impact on the ability of consumers to pay for services.

The municipal financial year ends on June 30.

In a statement issued to mark the release of the third-quarter report, Treasury said aggregate municipal consumer debts amounted to R76.6bn on March 31 this year.

"Households account for the largest component of consumer debtors, accounting for 64.9%, or R49.8bn.

"It is accepted that a certain percentage of this debt is probably irrecoverable, because municipalities have not been writing off irrecoverable debts on a consistent basis."

The statement did not put a figure on the irrecoverable debt, saying only that it was "working on reporting processes" to get better information in this regard.

Outstanding debt due to the country's metropolitan municipalities amounted to R45bn.

"This represents an increase of R7bn, or 18.4%, from the third quarter of the 2010/11 financial year, of which (the) City of Johannesburg accounted for 31.8%, or R14.3bn."

On municipal spending, it says municipalities had spent, on aggregate, 63.8%, or R163.9bn, of their total adjusted budget of R256.8bn by March 31 this year.

Comments
  • Vusi - 2012-06-05 17:39

    People don't have jobs, there are only a few tax payers in this country. ANC administration should create jobs for people then they will pay. Job Creation is their promise anyway

      Nicholas - 2012-06-05 17:49

      Governments do not create jobs, businesses create jobs. Government's role is to make sure that the environment is right for job creation which our government has yet to learn. At the moment they are allowing job killing unions to run the show. Municipalities also make very little effort to collect outstanding rates and taxes and have virtually no systems in place to deal with it hence this massive amount owed. What can be done however, and what will be done again no doubt, is that this will be written off. That is one of the main reasons people don't pay up.

      Jacques - 2012-06-05 19:38

      I dont get this. Where I live if I dont pay they cut my lights. Most of our emerging housing areas including townships are on prepaid meters. I dont get how this debt could escalate as on post paid accounts they switch it of when not paid and on prepayment it is obvious that if you dont pay you dont get electricity. Two things most likely to balme here. They are including the massive mess based on the incoorect billing system such a Joburg or they are shifting blame. In any business if your debt escalates to an irrecoverable amount it is you and only you to blame. In this case incompetancy will again let the people who actualy pay, pay more. Its apartheids fault of coarse

      Thozi - 2012-06-05 20:00

      All I know is that I owe one of those billions. I'd better get a job fast or I'm in trouble... that's the problem of not being a 'comrade' and not having the 'right political connections'.

      Thozi - 2012-06-05 20:00

      All I know is that I owe one of those billions. I'd better get a job fast or I'm in trouble... that's the problem of not being a 'comrade' and not having the 'right political connections'.

      Dragan - 2012-06-05 21:14

      @ Nicholas. Perfectly right, govt can't create jobs efficiently its entrepreneurs only who can do this but what you call rates I call RENT. we have some of the highest rates in the world. If I do not pay they confiscate my property so in all reality it is not really my property I'm more of a tenant who also foots the bill for servicing the property. Ekurhuleni is the biggest Mafia/business in S.A. they produce nothing, all they do is collect money as rent, I never know where that money is allocated. I pay extras for keeping the streets clean and to top it off they act as a middleman for Eskom charging HUUUGE markups on electricity they never created, they even increase the elec rate in winter and their answer to this is supply goes up. I often receive my invoice late but the final notice which I must now pay an extra R80.00 arrives early. To put it in plain English I have had it with the corrupt F****rs.

  • Vusi - 2012-06-05 17:40

    People don't have jobs, there are only a few tax payers in this country. ANC administration should create jobs for people then they will pay. Job Creation is their promise anyway

      Stewart Croucamp - 2012-06-05 18:04

      Why don't people create jobs for themselves. Stop sitting on your arses and get moving.

      Clive - 2012-06-05 21:34

      Vusi: Read Nicholas's comments above about governments not creating jobs; he is spot on.

      Clive - 2012-06-05 21:35

      Vusi: Read Nicholas's comments above about governments not creating jobs; he is spot on.

      dane.jenkinson - 2012-06-05 22:04

      Government is NOT an employment agency.

      dane.jenkinson - 2012-06-05 22:04

      Government is NOT an employment agency.

      Zizzy - 2012-06-06 12:40

      I agree with Steward.Why does it have to be the duty of the government to create jobs for people?

      Zizzy - 2012-06-06 12:40

      I agree with Steward.Why does it have to be the duty of the government to create jobs for people?

  • ianon.ym - 2012-06-05 17:46

    How many Cows and Sheep is that?

  • Rich - 2012-06-05 18:03

    What about the money they owe us, I have been waiting for thousands in refunds on three property sales for over two years. Pay us first you scum !!!

  • Rich - 2012-06-05 18:03

    What about the money they owe us, I have been waiting for thousands in refunds on three property sales for over two years. Pay us first you scum !!!

  • Rich - 2012-06-05 18:04

    What about the money they owe us, I have been waiting for thousands in refunds on three property sales for over two years. Pay us first you scum !!!

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 18:13

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-06-05 18:14

    Do I get a discount for paying my bills?

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 18:14

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • phillip.beukes.5 - 2012-06-05 18:16

    Ok... i owe them R598.25.... and i will pay next week...

  • phillip.beukes.5 - 2012-06-05 18:16

    Ok... i owe them R598.25.... and i will pay next week...

  • phillip.beukes.5 - 2012-06-05 18:17

    Ok... i owe them R598.25.... and i will pay next week...

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 18:27

    All this while eskom want to hike prices again.On the news today they admitted that consumers are going to pay....again.Problem is consumers are being ripped off and battling to make ends meet.The gravy train has to be stopped,the self serving bastards must serve us.Trade your fancy cars in for R50 000 rand ones before its too late.

      icarus.smith.90 - 2012-06-05 19:52

      Time the tax payers stopped paying tax. Put politicians on minimum wage, and only then will you see changes.

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 18:29

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 18:30

    Wishful thinking Stewart.

  • melania.nel - 2012-06-05 18:30

    I wonder how the books will look if the Youth league takes property by force.

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 18:32

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • Rich - 2012-06-05 18:33

    What about the money they owe us, I have been waiting for thousands in refunds on three property sales for over two years. Pay us first you scum !!!

  • Jenna - 2012-06-05 18:35

    Then stop giving these errand households services you thickies

  • Jenna - 2012-06-05 18:36

    Then stop giving these errand households services you thickies

  • Don.Tandy - 2012-06-05 19:00

    ANARCHY Nepotism Corruption

  • Don.Tandy - 2012-06-05 19:00

    ANARCHY Nepotism Corruption

      Don.Tandy - 2012-06-05 19:04

      Not sure why the system appears to be repeating comments. Perhaps someone from the Treasury is manning the news desk.

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 19:05

    Jenna i agree unfortunately its not that simple.People get retrenched,have accidents,become ill etc etc,we cannot see into the future.

  • WG - 2012-06-05 19:32

    One Only: Total Tax Freedom Economic freedom is fundamental to achieve self-sufficiency and prosperity. The obscure political power taxing people destroys economic freedom and divides communities; because it is always abused by minority self-interests and breeds conflicts, protests and revolutions. Tax is any economic value surrendered to political force. Tax abuse includes: quick riches for power abusers; useless services; untaxed corruption; huge living costs enforced with profits and tax of state directed and uncompetitive business. Tax abuse makes it impossible for anyone to calculate what total tax is; or to collect all taxes and ensure that tax abusers and everyone pay their fair tax share. The unknown total tax on the masses must be far more than what they earn. That forces people into excessive debt even for basic living costs and increases poverty. Self-interest driven tax abuse is unstoppable. So stop its source, the obscure political power taxing people. Total tax freedom is the one and only solution. Then everybody knows tax is exactly nil. With their hard earned money totally tax free, all people can afford competitive goods and services. And they may freely contribute for community needs and minimal competent public duties. That leaves no reason to tax people, except for abuse. Empower people with economic and total tax freedom. It cures tax abuse, unemployment and poverty. Civilized people unite to end outdated tax slavery. Do not vote otherwise!

  • WG - 2012-06-05 19:33

    One Only: Total Tax Freedom Economic freedom is fundamental to achieve self-sufficiency and prosperity. The obscure political power taxing people destroys economic freedom and divides communities; because it is always abused by minority self-interests and breeds conflicts, protests and revolutions. Tax is any economic value surrendered to political force. Tax abuse includes: quick riches for power abusers; useless services; untaxed corruption; huge living costs enforced with profits and tax of state directed and uncompetitive business. Tax abuse makes it impossible for anyone to calculate what total tax is; or to collect all taxes and ensure that tax abusers and everyone pay their fair tax share. The unknown total tax on the masses must be far more than what they earn. That forces people into excessive debt even for basic living costs and increases poverty. Self-interest driven tax abuse is unstoppable. So stop its source, the obscure political power taxing people. Total tax freedom is the one and only solution. Then everybody knows tax is exactly nil. With their hard earned money totally tax free, all people can afford competitive goods and services. And they may freely contribute for community needs and minimal competent public duties. That leaves no reason to tax people, except for abuse. Empower people with economic and total tax freedom. It cures tax abuse, unemployment and poverty. Civilized people unite to end outdated tax slavery. Do not vote otherwise!

  • WG - 2012-06-05 19:36

    One Only: Total Tax Freedom Economic freedom is fundamental to achieve self-sufficiency and prosperity. The obscure political power taxing people destroys economic freedom and divides communities; because it is always abused by minority self-interests and breeds conflicts, protests and revolutions. Tax is any economic value surrendered to political force. Tax abuse includes: quick riches for power abusers; useless services; untaxed corruption; huge living costs enforced with profits and tax of state directed and uncompetitive business. Tax abuse makes it impossible for anyone to calculate what total tax is; or to collect all taxes and ensure that tax abusers and everyone pay their fair tax share. The unknown total tax on the masses must be far more than what they earn. That forces people into excessive debt even for basic living costs and increases poverty. Self-interest driven tax abuse is unstoppable. So stop its source, the obscure political power taxing people. Total tax freedom is the one and only solution. Then everybody knows tax is exactly nil. With their hard earned money totally tax free, all people can afford competitive goods and services. And they may freely contribute for community needs and minimal competent public duties. That leaves no reason to tax people, except for abuse. Empower people with economic and total tax freedom. It cures tax abuse, unemployment and poverty. Civilized people unite to end outdated tax slavery. Do not vote otherwise!

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 19:48

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 19:52

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • icarus.smith.90 - 2012-06-05 19:53

    Time the tax payers stopped paying tax. Put politicians on minimum wage, and only then will you see changes.

  • Rob - 2012-06-05 20:00

    Debts written off are just one way to redistribute wealth. If a person is unable to repay debt they are living beyond their means and being supported by the suckers who do pay theer accounts...not by the government or the municipalities. This is normal social welfare, and within reason it will be acceptable to most. What is not acceptable, to me at least, is that there is no recognition from the recipients (or the government) that people getting relief are not being supported by the government or the anc, they are being supported by reasonable honest people who do live within their means.

  • Philip - 2012-06-05 22:28

    Epic fail to the ANC governmont! Epic, epic, epic!!!

  • Sylvester.Mohloli - 2012-06-05 22:41

    No Comment :)

  • Vince.York - 2012-06-05 23:52

    The new racist anc success story perchance? What's for tea? another child's child grant?

  • Leonard - 2012-06-06 08:36

    the municipality own homes owners million for no service delivery ok not the other way around

  • Leonard - 2012-06-06 09:01

    we demand change

  • Vasee - 2012-06-06 13:59

    What do you expect when the govt.is corrupt which indirectly impacts on cost of services skyrocketing. Take Escom who squander taxpayers money willy nilly. They are accountable to no one.Whenever they want money they demand an increase. By allowing them this privilege people cannot afford these increases. There will come a time when the consumers would not afford to pay for services as unemployment increases. This will lead to people into a culture of non payment as the price of services are far beyond what the people can pay for. If the govt.does not stop these blatant increases then it will have to pay the price of anarchy. Remember any charges for services must be within the inflation rate as union salary increases do not go over the inflation rate.Stop these blatant increases as most of it goes to corruption as it services the needs of the fat cats who are on the gravy train.

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