Johannesburg’s power utility, City Power has “successfully” disconnected a number of non-paying business and residential customers which collectively owe over R50 million in electricity bills.
City Power management together with law enforcement officials led the cut-off operation under the Midrand Service Delivery Centre (SDC) areas on Thursday, as part of the ongoing revenue collection drive.
“While the team was only targeting over R50 million, the Midrand SDC alone is owed over R350 million by defaulting and non-paying customers,” City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena said.
“Most of the customers that we paid an unpleasant visit, were mainly residential complexes, with one of them owing over R25 million.”
He said “quite unfortunately” in most cases, City Power finds that the tenants at the residential premises would be paying their electricity bills to property management utility companies.
“However, those property managers fail to pay the entity, which worryingly affects paying tenants. We condemn that behaviour with the strongest possible terms, and we urge tenants to hold their body corporates accountable for this,” said Mangena.
City Power, across all its service delivery centre is currently sitting with a debt of over R8 billion, from customers who are “refusing to pay” for services.
“It’s for that reason that, we have taken a decision to clamp down on the growing culture of non-payment. We will be scaling up these operations in the coming weeks in a bid to increase the rate and at which we are collecting revenue,” said Mangena.
“This is essential for the wellbeing of the organisation in its mandate of delivering power supply in a manner that promotes economic and social development objectives for residents of the City of Johannesburg.”
He emphasised that the disconnection drive will be carried out routinely, to ensure that City of Joburg restores the culture of paying for services.
“In the coming weeks, we will be visiting other areas to collect what is duly owed to the entity,” he said.
“We therefore urge customers to visit our centres to make arrangements to pay their outstanding bills to avoid facing a cut-off which comes with additional penalties.”
On the other hand, City of Tshwane has also unleashed an aggressive campaign, through its Tshwane Ya Tima revenue collection campaign which led this week to the disconnection of at least 70 households from the electricity and power grid.