Joburg Advocacy Group (JAG): Billing Crisis Reportback

Friday, 11 March 2011

Billing Crisis Reportback

We're pleased to advise that there has been significant progress on the Joburg billing crisis during the past week.

The report into the crisis that we called for on 19 January has been completed by the Gauteng MEC for Local Government and Housing, both the Mayor and the Acting Minister of Cooperative Development and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) have apologised for the crisis, problem areas have been identified and strategies put in place to deal with them, and we had two reports yesterday of residents "unexpectedly" getting their incorrect bills sorted. We hope these will be just the first of many.

We were also contacted by the new National Consumer Commission yesterday, which called to offer assistance on protracted individual cases. We're very grateful that the commission has taken this initiative prior to even opening its doors, and we will begin sending selected cases through for its attention on Monday.  

Further news came this morning when it was reported on TimesLive that City Manager, Mavela Dlamini has replaced billing and revenue executive director, Vicky Shuping. Our thanks to Mr Dlamini for this and other actions he has taken over the past week since participating in a debate with JAG on Summit TV on 3 March.
We're still receiving a high level of complaints about the Joburg Connect helpline, though, and about the new e-mails address, so we have advised the City Manager of these issues. We hope they'll be addressed shortly. 
It took a furore to get here, but we're pleased that we're starting to see results.

JAG's mission is to work for solutions on defined issues and not to engage in a perpetual cycle of conflict, so we're pleased to announce these developments, and hope this will be the beginning of the end of the billing crisis.

Note: for further information, please refer to our Updated Billing Crisis Information Leaflet for Residents and Businesses - there's a link to it in the sidebar.  

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