Businesses, residential complexes in Midrand owe City Power R360m
City Power kick-started this year's revenue collection drive in Midrand on Thursday when it targeted several defaulting business and residential customers that collectively owe hundreds of millions of rand in unpaid electricity bills.
The City of Johannesburg's power utility said it is owed R360m in unpaid accounts in the Midrand area.
Technicians cut off several businesses and residential customers in its revenue drive.
City Power Midrand service delivery centre GM Katlego Mogale-Makoni said the utility targeted 14 customers who owed almost R58m on Thursday.
“We started with the first account, the biggest account of the day. It is a residential complex [Phoenix View Estate] that has more than 400 units that owe the city R25m, and then we will move like that until we get to all the accounts we have identified for the R58m today [Thursday],” she said.
A manager at Phoenix View Estate, Allen Steyn, was caught by surprise when technicians disconnected electricity at the complex. He said there was an issue with the meter reading and they had been in communication with the city for months to sort out the problem.
“This is a total disregard for people living in the complex. The problem was discussed with them and there was an agreement to sort it out. We are taking this up with the city,” Steyn said.
Mogale-Makoni said they were not ambushing their customers and those they had targeted had been issued with notices. The city had a credit control process and gave customers notice before cutting them off, she said.
“We don't just come, there are processes we follow. We issue a notice to say, 'You owe the city so much. Please come and make arrangements or please pay your debt,' so we don't just come without engaging the customers.”
Some customers approach them, she said, mostly when they have queries or legal issues, but the entity attends to those problems.
“But there are those given notices and there are no other queries on their accounts, they are just not paying. When you are given notice, we follow our processes and on the notices it gives the customer a number of days to pay their account or to make arrangements with the city.
“Failure to acknowledge or pay, then the city will be obliged to cut [customers] off.”
Would you like to comment on this article?
Sign up (it's quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.