…By Roland Peterson for TDPel Media.
A significant number of businesses in Johannesburg are at risk of having their water and electricity supply disconnected due to unpaid debts owed to the city.
The City of Johannesburg has announced an aggressive disconnection drive, targeting business customers who have outstanding utility bills.
Pre-termination notices have been issued to notify affected businesses of the impending disconnections.
The Scale of Outstanding Debts:
While the exact number of businesses facing disconnection is yet to be determined, it is clear that a significant number of businesses in Johannesburg are in arrears.
The city has identified hundreds of businesses that are at risk of having their water and electricity supply cut off.
This highlights the severity of the problem and the urgent need for action to recover the outstanding debts.
Aggressive Disconnection Drive:
The City of Johannesburg’s group finance department has announced its intention to implement an aggressive disconnection drive.
This initiative aims to enforce payment and hold businesses accountable for their debts.
By sending pre-termination notices to affected customers, the city is providing a warning and an opportunity for businesses to settle their outstanding bills before disconnection occurs.
Credit Control and Debt Collection Policy:
To recover the owed amounts, the city will utilize its Credit Control and Debt Collection Policy.
This policy empowers the city’s Credit Control unit to take appropriate action in recouping outstanding debts from customers.
The policy stipulates that customers who fail to pay their outstanding amounts and do not enter into an Acknowledgment of Debt Agreement (AOD) within the specified period may face disconnection of electricity and restricted or throttled water supply.
Support for Struggling Businesses:
Recognizing that some businesses may be facing financial difficulties, the city urges customers to approach them for assistance.
By signing an Acknowledgment of Debt Agreement (AOD), businesses can potentially avoid disconnection.
This approach demonstrates a willingness to work with customers and find mutually beneficial solutions to address the outstanding debts.
The City of Johannesburg’s decision to take action against businesses with outstanding utility bills is a necessary step to ensure accountability and sustainability.
While the disconnection of water and electricity supply can have severe consequences for businesses, it is essential for the city to recover the debts owed to maintain the provision of essential services.
The implementation of the Credit Control and Debt Collection Policy provides a framework for fair and consistent procedures in dealing with outstanding debts.
This situation serves as a reminder for businesses to prioritize timely payment of their bills and seek assistance when facing financial challenges to avoid disruptions in utility services.