Emfuleni municipality blames unemployment for failure to settle water debt

Various areas, including Palm Springs and Vanderbeijlpark, have been left without water since last week, as a result of the municipality failing to settle its debt to Rand Water.

Emfuleni Mayor Jacob Khawe (centre). Picture: Emfuleni Municipality/Flickr

JOHANNESBURG - The Emfuleni Municipality says about half of the residents that it is providing water to are unemployed, which makes revenue collection a mammoth task.

Various areas, including Palm Springs and Vanderbeijlpark, have been left without water since last week, as a result of the municipality failing to settle its debt to Rand Water.

It owes billions of rands but has so far paid R200 million to the supplier.

Residents of Palm Springs have been protesting over the water cuts for days now and Mayor Jacob Khawe is trying to resolve the matter with Rand Water.

His spokesperson Lebo Mofokeng says they need a long-term solution to the ongoing problem of revenue collection.

“But we’re trying our best to be able to turn around the municipality as well as to turn around the revenue collection in the municipality which should then impact on the bulk service, honouring the payment thereof.”

The municipality has provided communities with water tanks to help out in the middle of the current heatwave gripping Gauteng.