Durban — The eThekwini Ratepayers and Residents Association (ERRA) submitted a memorandum to the eThekwini Municipality to provide a framework for service delivery on Monday.
Led by ERRA chairperson Ish Prahladh, the gathering involved more than 20 ratepayers associations from different wards in the eThekwini Municipality.
In the memorandum, Prahladh suggested that there should be a bi-monthly meeting with the mayor, city manager and all municipality head of departments to view and assess the status of service delivery.
Prahladh said the ERRA intends on building a solid and growing relationship with the city and aims to work together to help the eThekwini community receive a better service delivery for the best value money can buy.
“It is critical that each department provides the ERRA with a recent trend analysis of the service outage per suburb,” Prahladh said.
Woodview Ratepayers Association chairperson Theo Pillay said that the gathering was to fight for their basic right of service delivery. These included water and sanitation, lights, infrastructure and increased rates.
“We are here to talk to the relevant departments to have this thing resolved because we are tired of waiting and nothing happens. The City has an ultimatum to either listen to us or else we have to do what we can to get their attention,” said Pillay.
He also addressed the issue of human settlements and land issues within the Phoenix community.
“We are looking at what is the status there. Where is the land report that is supposed to be provided by the Special Investigating Unit?” asked Pillay.
Queensburgh Ratepayers Association chairperson Sash Singh said the main issue in her area was the councillor and that they were not being held accountable and disrespecting community members.
“We are here not just representing ourselves, but our whole community. We are also trying to address the issue of tariff hikes,” Singh said.
eThekwini Municipality speaker Thabani Nyawose received the memorandum at the Durban City Hall.
eThekwini spokesperson Lindiwe Khuzwayo said that the City would study the contents of the memorandum. Khuzwayo said all citizens and stakeholders were encouraged to raise their views regarding the proposed increases so that they can be considered before the budget approval next month and in June.
“We would like to remind our residents and ratepayer organisations that this is the period of public consultation. It is also important to note that as much as inflation levels are a key factor in deciding tariff increases, they are not the only factor to influence the decision as there are other factors considered during the process of budget preparation,” Khuzwayo said.
She said these included maintenance and ensuring services would be delivered efficiently. Khuzwayo added that people need to note that the tariff hikes were a necessity to recover from a series of disasters over the last three years.
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