LINDIWE Dweba said she has been paying her monthly municipal bills without fail since 2005.But earlier this month the 49-year-old woman from Ngwelezane, northern KZN, discovered that she owed the uMhlathuze Municipality about R7 000.She told Daily Sun that the municipal teller told her that she owed the municipality this sum of money for her water supply. “When I inquired why I owed so much, the teller told me that the water meter of my house was mistakenly billed under someone else,” said Lindiwe.She said the teller indicated that it was the municipality’s fault, but Lindiwe is not happy with how the municipality handled the matter. They told her to start paying off the debt or else they would cut her water supply. “It was not my fault that my meter got billed under someone else,” said Lindiwe. She said she was not refusing to pay, but that the matter should have been handled better. She said she was not refusing to pay off the money but the municipality must not treat her as if she knew that her meter was being charged under someone else. Municipality’s spokesman Mdu Ncalane said Lindiwe’s meter was mistakenly billed under the name of another resident and they had instructed her to pay off the debt.“But we never said she must pay off the money all at once.“We said she can pay it in instalments,” said Ncalane.He said Lindiwe was in the wrong as she had 25 rental rooms and a bakery business, and should be billed as a business. He revealed that when they paid Lindiwe a visit, they discovered that she was also in the wrong, as she had about 25 rental rooms and a bakery business in her yard yet the municipality was billing her as a household while her actions showed that she should be billed as a business. “We discovered that in some of these rooms, water is connected illegally from a community’s standpipe which is something that we are totally against as the municipality,” said Ncalane. When Daily Sun went back to Lindiwe to ask about the rental rooms, she said she was unhappy with the municipality’s visit and did not respond to the question.didn’t like the manner in which the municipality paid her a visit because they never notified her in advance that they were going to visit her home and failed to respond on the question.
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