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Ekurhuleni Mayor Tania Campbell promises Tembisa residents to implement a debt relief policy

Ekurhuleni mayor Tania Campbell met with Tembisa residents following violent service delivery protests.Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Ekurhuleni mayor Tania Campbell met with Tembisa residents following violent service delivery protests.Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Aug 5, 2022

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Pretoria-Ekurhuleni Mayor Tania Campbell met with Tembisa residents on Friday and promised to resolve incorrect billing and implement a debt relief policy that would cover those who are financially incapacitated.

Campbell also promised to provide 50% write-off of debts for residents.

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“We will provide you with 50% write-off debts in excess of one year on date of application and approval, inclusive of rates, service charges, interests and other costs.

“With the billing system, many of you have highlighted the issue of historic dates and incorrect billing hanging over you and your families. This needs to be rectified immediately. We want to assure you that the issue of an incorrect billing system is being resolved. We will also ensure that the bowls of water sanitation rates and taxes are separated from the electricity bowl.”

Campbell was addressing residents at Mehlareng Stadium after they embarked on a two day protest which led to the deaths of four residents.

The protest was triggered by Campbell’s failure to attend a meeting last Friday. She instead sent her mayoral committee members.

The Mayor apologised for failing to meet residents to address their grievances, saying that she was not avoiding meeting them but was getting ready to bring them tangible solutions.

One of the residents who attended the meeting said he was sceptical of Campbell’s promises.

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“She has put a proposal on the table, as a community, we want to see if she will implement it. But the truth of the matter is, it’s not likely because people had to die, Tembisa had to go up in flames for her to come to the community. Her leadership doesn’t inspire confidence,” the resident told eNCA.

The two-day protest left a trail of destruction: four dead, hundreds injured, millions of rands in damages to public infrastructure and most parts of the Ekurhuleni township without power.

Campbell said the damage caused by the protests has been extensive.

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“We have done an estimate of the damage and it is about R35 million. That still has to go through a proper auditing process. We appeal to communities not to damage property which is there to serve them. Those facilities are there for our communities, to assist our communities,” she said.

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