Four Western Cape municipalities in arrears with Eskom, owing close to R 90 million

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The Western Cape government has recently revealed that four out of thirty of its municipalities are currently in arrears with Eskom – owing almost R 90 million.

James-Brent Styan – the spokesperson for the Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell – noted that the municipalities shown below owe the following amounts:

  • Cederberg: R39.6 million
  • Beaufort West: R29.1 million
  • Kannaland: R13.9 million
  • Matzikama: R7.1 million

Bredell said the department monitors municipalities in the province to determine if bulk service accounts are being settled timeously.

“We are very pleased to note that 26 of our municipalities are currently in good standing with Eskom. We are working hard with the other four to arrange payment terms and to ensure the situation is resolved as speedily as possible.”

Bredell then said that most municipalities in the Western Cape are rural and struggle financially. However, there should be no excuse to not pay your Eskom bill.

“Municipalities are able to reallocate the profit they get for facilitating electricity to their communities, but the amount owed to Eskom should not be utilized for other costs like that of personnel costs at a municipality,” added Bredell.

In other news, Bredell has welcomed the recent allocation of provincial funds towards the Municipal Energy Resilience (MER) Project in the Western Cape.

He stated, “The funding will assist selected municipalities in their efforts to become more energy resilient given ongoing challenges with electricity supply in the country.”

The following candidate municipalities participating in the first phase of the MER Project are:

  • Drakenstein Municipality
  • Mossel Bay Municipality
  • Overstrand Municipality
  • Saldanha Bay Municipality
  • Stellenbosch Municipality
  • Swartland Municipality

He continued to say that the provincial treasury allocated R 48,8 million over the medium term. They will also provide a further R 20 million in the provincial reserves for the project.

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