The Democratic Alliance (DA) is shocked to learn that the Gauteng Provincial Government Departments owes ANC-led local municipalities over R89 million for utilities.
This was revealed to me by the Gauteng MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), Lebogang Maile in a written reply to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature.
According to MEC Maile, Gauteng Provincial Government Departments owe R89 503 016,41 to the following local municipalities; Emfuleni Local Municipality, Lesedi Local Municipality, Mogale City Local Municipality and Merafong Local Municipality.
The money owed to these local municipalities is for utilities and is overdue by over 120 days.
Emfuleni is owed a large sum of money compared to other municipalities with a total of R49 647 977,72 of which Gauteng Department of Education is owing R 11 265 058,46, the Gauteng Department of Health owes R18 347 003,51 and the Gauteng Department of Human Settlements owes R257 297,44.
Merafong is owed a total of R14 217 599,21, Mogale City is owed R12 996 983,23 and Lesedi is owed R12 640 646,25.
Most of these municipalities have unfunded mandates and they have no money to render services to their residents. This money owed to them could help to ease their financial pressure.
The embattled Emfuleni is struggling to pay debt owed to Eskom and Rand Water as well as to deliver basic services such as sanitation and refuse removal.
The DA calls on MEC Maile to intervene and engage with various departments that owe these municipalities monies to make payment arrangements as soon as possible.
We will continue to monitor the progress of the payments of these debts by the Gauteng Provincial Departments to these four municipalities.
The Gauteng Provincial Government must lead by example in paying for utility debt owed to municipalities so that residents can follow suit.