Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo and committee member for finance Councillor Parks Tau face charges of contravening the Municipal Systems Act.
Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo and committee member for finance Councillor Parks Tau face charges of contravening the Municipal Systems Act.

Residents charge Joburg mayor

By Time of article published Feb 18, 2011

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A group of residents has laid criminal charges against City of Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo amid the billing crisis that has left many without electricity.

The Blairgowrie Community Association has also laid charges against the City's member of the mayoral committee on finance, Parks Tau.

Masondo and Tau face charges of contravening the Municipal Systems Act, relating to the over-billing of many Johannesburg residents for rates and utilities followed by disconnections if the bills are not paid.

The association's spokesman Linus Muller, who laid the charges, said that a number of residents from the northern Johannesburg suburb complained about unfair disconnections.

He said most of those cut off had already lodged complaints with the municipality.

According to Muller, it was unlawful to disconnect a consumer if he or she had lodged a dispute with the municipality.

Lieutenant-Colonel Tshisakhawe Ndou confirmed to the newspaper that a case had been opened.

The city's communications director, Gabu Tugwana, said he needed to check with the legal department before commenting.

The Johannesburg Advocacy Group said other victims of the Johannesburg “billing crisis” would protest outside the City's customer service offices on Friday. JAG was appealing to victims of the billing crisis to take “peaceful direct action” to ensure the billing problems were resolved.

The group appealed to residents to join in the protest at Thuso House, on the corner of Simmonds and Siemens Streets in Braamfontein, where the City's customer services offices were located.

The protest was due to begin at 8.30am on Friday. - Sapa

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