The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse claims that the Emfuleni Municipality’s basic services fleet, including essential service vehicles, has been repossessed.
According to OUTA the municipality allegedly defaulted on payments and all vehicles including vehicles from the traffic, water and electricity departments and fire engines were repossessed by Bidvest, from whom they were leased.
Failing to honour financial obligations
“The National Treasury regulations stipulate that service providers must be paid within 30 days of issuing an invoice. Emfuleni Municipality has also not honoured its financial obligations to Eskom, Rand Water and many other service providers,” says Dr Makhosi Khoza, OUTA Executive Director responsible for the local governance programme.
“The White Paper on Local Government and the Local Government Systems Act stress the critical importance of community and civil society involvement in the governance of municipalities, yet all interventions in collapsed municipalities exclude civil society and community representatives,” Dr Khoza notes.
Calls for the dissolution of Emfuleni
The organisation is calling on Minister of Cooperative Governance Zweli Mkhize, Premier David Makhura and the Gauteng and national treasuries to urgently implement Section 139, the constitutional provision that allows for the dissolution of Emfuleni municipality.
“The councillors in Emfuleni municipality have failed to fulfill their electoral mandate. Allow communities and civil society to play a part in rescuing the collapsed Emfuleni municipality,” says Khoza.
“When all is said and done, it is the communities that suffer when municipal services are not delivered or fail.”