SABATHA INHERITS DEBT

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WHEN Sabatha Ndaba (43) was released from jail after serving eight years, he found out he owned a house.He also found out he owed the municipality a fortune.While he was in prison, his mum and gogo died and Sabatha found strangers living in his late gogo’s house.He found out his elders left everything, including the house, in his name in January 2001.In 2016, municipal officials cut off the electricity because of an outstanding bill of R162 000.Sabatha from Phumula kasi in Ermelo, Mpumalanga, said the officials had papers stating the house belonged him.“They said since my grandmother died the house had accumulated debt and that I must pay.”He said he’s unemployed and survives on piece work.“I’ve been trying to get the municipality to fix the problem. “Municipal officials say I must settle the debt first and they’ll turn the lights back on.”Sabatha said the occupants left with all his gogo’s furniture and clothes. They even tried to register the house in their names.Msukaligwa municipal spokesman Mandla Zwane said the arrears date back to 2003.“Sabatha must pay the fine for the illegal connection and apply for an indigent subsidy because he’s unemployed,” he said.

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