eThekwini Service Tariff Increases Amid Economic Challenges

eThekwini Service Tariff Increases Amid Economic Challenges

Residents of eThekwini, already grappling with frequent water shortages, power outages, and substandard service delivery, are now facing significant hikes in charges for essential services including water, sanitation, and refuse removal. These increases are well above the current inflation rate.

In a recent announcement at City Hall, eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda revealed a series of adjustments affecting household expenses throughout the city. This declaration came as part of the city’s budget proposal, amounting to R67.2 billion.

eThekwini Budget Adjustments and Tariff Increases

The budget detailed several changes in the tariffs for various services:

Property rates have been adjusted from a suggested 7.9% increase down to 6.5%.

Water rates saw a reduction from the initially recommended 14.9% to 12.9%.

“We are reducing water tariffs with 2%. This increase will be directed to the maintenance, upgrade, security and building of new water-related infrastructure,”

Mayor Kaunda explained.

Sanitation services will witness a reduced tariff increase from 12.9% to 10.9%.

Charges for refuse removal are set to rise by 7% for domestic users and 8% for businesses, down from earlier proposals of 8% and 9%, respectively.

Despite these adjustments, local ratepayer organizations have pointed out that the revised rates are still above the national inflation rate of 5.3%, and for some services, the increases are in double digits.

Community Feedback and Municipal Responses

Mayor Kaunda emphasized that the reductions from the initially proposed rates to the newly approved tariffs were a direct response to community input, showcasing the governance’s attentiveness to public concern.

“In response to your complaints that the proposed tariff increases were too high, we have made some changes,”

said Kaunda.

He further noted that the funds from the increased tariffs would be allocated towards enhancing the city’s infrastructure, addressing some of the critical issues that have plagued residents with inadequate service delivery.

The mayor’s announcement underscores the administration’s attempt to balance necessary infrastructure investments with the economic realities faced by its citizens, particularly in a time of broader economic hardship marked by rising costs of living, including food and fuel prices. This approach highlights the ANC-led government’s efforts to listen and adapt to the needs and feedback of its community, attempting to mitigate the financial impact on its ratepayers while still addressing critical service needs.

What do you think?


Written by Siphiwe Dlamini

Name: Siphiwe Dlamini
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Occupation: Journalist and Political Analyst

Siphiwe Dlamini is a dynamic and passionate journalist and political analyst based in Johannesburg, South Africa. With a unique blend of academic expertise and practical experience, Siphiwe has established himself as a trusted voice in the field of journalism, particularly in political reporting and analysis.

Siphiwe holds a Bachelor's degree in Journalism, where he honed his skills in investigative reporting, news writing, and multimedia storytelling. Additionally, he pursued a degree in Political Science, deepening his understanding of political systems, international relations, and policy analysis. This interdisciplinary educational background equips him with a comprehensive understanding of the socio-political landscape, enabling him to provide insightful commentary on current affairs.

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