Dennis Williams Realtors Logo
You are here: Dennis Williams Realtors / Latest News / Outrage Over Durbans Handling Of Billing Crisis

Outrage over Durban's handling of billing crisis


Outrage over Durban's handling of billing crisis

Although Durban mayor Zandile Gumede has admitted residents were over-billed and promised to establish independent investigations into the rates billing system, residents are still outraged over how the city is handling the crisis.

Some residents who received incorrect bills felt their complaints were neglected and the city was quick to disconnect their supply, but failed to provide adequate responses to their bill queries.

During her 365 days reportback meeting, Gumede said she would lead a probe into the crisis.

However, residents believed the billing system was one of many setbacks in the consumer services unit.

An irate Chatsworth resident, Raisa Omar, welcomed Gumede's decision to investigate. However, she said more needed to be done by the city to resolve consumer billing problems.

"The city fails to resolve minor consumer problems and blames it on their billing system.

"When we converted to prepaid last year, the city continued to charge us. When we inquired about that they promised to investigate the matter.

"It took more than six months before the matter got resolved and they again blamed it on their billing system. How is that possible?.

"The most irritating part when you query your bill is when they ask you to send the readings, but that is not even captured in your statement.

"In spite of sending 14 emails, there seemed to be no intention of trying to resolve the mismanagement account.

"The city acts quickly to disconnect your supply and hand your account over to their attorney, but we have been over billed for years, and nobody cares," she said.

Bob Thorne of Highlands Hills in Pinetown said: "My query was very simple, why is our electricity consumption frequently estimated on our utility account when I SMSED the reading to them every month?"

He lambasted the municipality for not being able to solve simple queries.

But city spokesperson Tozi Mthethwa viewed the the accusations differently. She said there had been a major improvement with the system.

Mthethwa said the municipality had always been committed to investigating, immediately, any bill that was of my unusually high and wherever adjustments were required, they were reflected in the next bill.

She said as per the mayoral report, they were allowing a further two months for the issues to be addressed.

"The city's internal audit, internal controls, and expenditure units will also look into the matter.

"The city has already corrected many accounts and adjusted bills accordingly. Should further errors be identified, we will also correct them immediately."

Mthethwa advised residents who were not satisfied with the billing to address the matter directly with the supervisor or ask to speak to the relevant manager.

She said ward councillors were also providing an important supporting role in ensuring that customers were assisted.

Author IOL
Published 25 Oct 2017 / Views -
Disclaimer:  While every effort will be made to ensure that the information contained within the Dennis Williams Realtors website is accurate and up to date, Dennis Williams Realtors makes no warranty, representation or undertaking whether expressed or implied, nor do we assume any legal liability, whether direct or indirect, or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information. Prospective purchasers and tenants should make their own enquiries to verify the information contained herein.