He said he would take it upon himself to make sure that all government departments in the country honoured their debts – not only to municipalities but all unpaid invoices to other service providers.
“When I leave here, I am going to ensure that all government departments do comply. I am going to insist. I am going to write to each and every minister to do that. I am going to take it upon myself to help the president to ensure that those who are owing, they must pay. And if they don’t pay, they must explain to the president why they are not paying,” he said.
“It’s a duty that I am prepared to do because that is stipulated in our law.”
Mabuza accused government departments and municipalities of procuring services from small businesses with money they don’t have. “They procure a service while they don’t have the money. They wait for a period of adjustments where they may find money to go pay. By that time, the small business is dead,” he said.
He also called on politicians who may have led consumer boycott campaigns in the past to now go back to communities and campaign for payment.
“It’s time to go back and say to our people: It’s time to pay now. The struggles are over because at that time we were fighting a system and wanted to pull down a system, so we encouraged everyone not to pay,” he said.
“So let’s stand up with the same vigour and in the same push and tell our people to pay.”