BY PATRICIA SIBANDA
THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has singled out landlords among major defaulters in paying water bills.
The council accused the landlords of collecting rentals from tenants, but fail to pay bills accrued by their lodgers.
BCC is owed more than $4 billion by residents and has introduced debt collection measures to recover what it is owed.
BCC finance committee chairperson, councillor Tawanda Ruzive yesterday said: “What we realise is that most house owners have tenants who pay bills, but the landlords keep the money and they do not pay anything to council.
“We had situations where we ended up auctioning houses due to indebtedness. Once people are told that they can lose their houses, they immediately begin to clear the debts. BCC was struggling with a legacy debt of around $4 billion, but it has significantly gone down after people made payment plans.”
He said BCC was asking for a minimum of US$20 per month from residents at the official bank rate.
Last year, BCC revealed that their credit control policy was successful because most people were now clearing their arrears.