Residents group begs ratepayers to pay bills

Source: Residents group begs ratepayers to pay bills – The Southern Eye

THE Zimbabwe National Organisation of Associations Residents Trust (ZNOART) has begged Gwanda city residents to pay their council bills to help the council deliver better service.

In a statement, ZNOART Matabeleland South chairperson Giveus Clement pleaded with ratepayers to pay their bills to avoid disconnections and to enable efficient service delivery.

“Water is cheap. A family can survive with water for US$0,81 per 1 000 litres or five drums; but we hesitate to pay and always complain when we pay. Fast foods and restaurants sell 500ml for US$0,50 and we happily buy it without complaining. Our municipality reduced prices for water from US$10 to US$2,80 so that we will be able to clear our outstanding bills,” Clement pointed out.

He warned residents that the city risks its raw water supplies being cut off by the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) because of outstanding bills, a development that will seriously affect the residents.

“There is a cholera outbreak spreading across the country and there are few boreholes to sustain us all. Pay your bills to avoid accumulation of fixed charges. Average water is ZWL$7 8034,12, refuse is ZWL$21 211,53, supplementary charges are ZWL$14 273,18, sewer is ZWL$ 21 211,53, public lighting is ZWL$12 389,91,” he said.

“The example above is extracted from an actual bill; first of all you realise that water is cheap and there are fixed charges, if you ignore those fixed charges they accumulate until the bill is unbearable, even if you don’t use the water but the fixed charges keep accumulating. Make it a point that you clear your fixed charges every month and you will realise that water is cheap,” he wrote in his statement.

Gwanda municipality has since purchased some meter reading gadgets which accurately shows GPS location, place and time a reading is made.

In October last year the council said Zinwa had threatened to disconnect raw water supplies to Gwanda due to mounting debts.

In turn, Gwanda council also threatened to intensify its water disconnection to owing ratepayers who reportedly owed a combined ZWL$5,1 billion.