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Municipal accounts dumped

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“In terms of our process, the municipality merely prints the accounts and they are given to the post office, who then delivers them to residents."

TOSSED: Hundreds of undelivered Sol Plaatje municipal accounts were seen dumped in George Street yesterday. Picture: Danie van der Lith

WHILE debts owed to Sol Plaatje Municipality are sitting at well over R2.2 billion, it appears that many debtors are not receiving their municipal accounts after a large number of unopened accounts were found dumped in George Street in Kimberley yesterday.

According to residents in the area, the piles of accounts were dumped in a parking area in George Street on Tuesday, however, the culprit is not known.

“There were two black bags that were just left here. It was later discovered that the bags contained municipal accounts of various residents. The owners of these accounts are not even aware that their accounts are lying on some corner in town. This is gross negligence by the person who left it or was instructed to leave these accounts here,” one resident said.

Many of the envelopes containing the accounts have spilled out of the black bags and the stacks of accounts are now scattered throughout the parking area.

The accounts, which include monies owed to the municipality by businesses and residents, appear to be recent accounts.

Sol Plaatje spokesperson Sello Matsie said yesterday that the responsibility of delivering accounts to residents rested with the SA Post Office.

“In terms of our process, the municipality merely prints the accounts and they are given to the post office, who then delivers them to residents.

“In the past, the municipality delivered its own accounts but this was stopped after the post office indicated that it was a service that was by law supposed to be delivered by them.”

Matsie said that the municipality would investigate the matter. “We will speak to the post office and also conduct an internal investigation.”

He added that many residents made use of the electronic system to receive and pay their accounts.

“More than 10 000 municipal account holders in Kimberley receive their accounts via e-mail and not through the normal post office delivery system.”

Matsie confirmed that many municipal accounts sent by post were returned to the municipality.

“We are appealing to residents to ensure that they receive their municipal statements and to inform us if they are not receiving them,” he said.