Apartheid blamed for Rand Water cuts at Emfuleni state of municipality address

Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

The mayor says he has nothing against white, Indian or rich black people, but apartheid was ‘definitely the cause for the collapsing ELM infrastructure’.

The state of the municipality address (soma) placed the blame for the current Rand Water cuts on the former apartheid infrastructure, reports Vaal Weekblad.

This message came from the executive mayor of Emfuleni Local Municipality (ELM), councillor Jacob Khawe, during his Soma address hosted in the City Hall on June 26.

READ MORE: Rand Water threatens to cut Emfuleni supply to 20%

Khawe said he had nothing against white and Indian people in general, but apartheid was “definitely the cause for the collapsing ELM infrastructure”.

“It is not my doing that apartheid created rich and poor, and the black unemployed who are unable to pay for their services.

“I do not have the intention to dislike white people,” he said. He also said he had nothing against black people who were rich and educated.

The audience lapped it up as he laid the blame for the dire state of affairs on the previous regime. Khawe did point out, however, that at least 60% of should-be ratepayers were not paying for services.

He also pointed out the national and provincial governments were perfectly capable of helping ELM financially.

He appealed to the local population to pay for water and electricity “even though the account itself was unmanageable”.

He said ELM had already paid R70 million to Rand Water last week. Khawe also highlighted that there were currently lots of managers, chiefs and assistance managers who “manage themselves” at ELM.

He plans to decrease the number of 33 managers and assistants to 22. This cutting process will save the municipality about R4.8 million a year.

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