IN QUOTES | David Mabuza wants you to pay your water & electricity bill: 'These services are not free'

05 November 2020 - 10:41
Deputy President David Mabuza answered questions in parliament on Wednesday.
Deputy President David Mabuza answered questions in parliament on Wednesday.
Image: GCIS

Deputy President David Mabuza has called on South Africans to pay municipalities for basic services like water and electricity. He says non-payment prevents local governments from reviving infrastructure that is needed to provide these services.

Mabuza said this on Wednesday during a virtual question and answer session with members of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

The deputy president also urged politicians to stop perpetuating divisiveness on issues of corruption and race.

“It is a very unfortunate perception that corruption seems to be synonymous with blacks. It is a very heavy, loaded statement which can cause fractures in society. As members [MPs] I think we should be wary of such statements because they are very divisive,” said Mabuza.

On the Senekal protests, he said the government “takes a dim view” on divisive and racist utterances made at the height of the protests.

Here are five important quotes from Mabuza:

Municipal debt

“Drastic measures are being implemented to ensure that municipal debts to Eskom are addressed including providing targeted technical support to municipalities so that it builds requisite capacities to deal with challenges relating to tariffs, billing, collections and metering.”

Service delivery

“As much as there are certain failures in the delivery of services like water and electricity, these services don't come for free. Our people must pay for these services so that our people can also service the infrastructure. At times, the collapse of these services is due to the ailing infrastructure which municipalities are unable to refurbish.”

Land reform 

“In terms of our land reform programme and where we are at the moment, the minister has announced our intention to give back land to women, young people and people with disabilities. She cited the number of hectares — 700,000 hectares of land will be made available. This process will be transparent and will be happening in all our municipalities, provinces and districts.”

Freight disruptions 

“The president mandated the minister of employment and labour to attend to the issue of road freight disruptions and the burning of trucks in the province of KwaZulu-Natal. The minister was accompanied by the minister of police, home affairs and the minister of transport and members of the provincial of the legislative council of KZN.

“Eight people have been convicted and sentenced and more than 10 suspects have been remanded in custody until the next court appearance.”

Addressing unemployment 

“As a government, we are taking the responsibility of creating work opportunities that will deal with the unemployment rate that is now prevailing in our communities.”