The #TshwaneYaTima campaign focusing on the disconnection of defaulting customers is at it again. The City is effecting stringent credit control measures in its endeavour to recoup more than R17 billion that it is owed by government departments, residential customers, businesses, embassies and state-owned entities due to non-payment of municipal accounts.
Tough measures will be implemented against customers who illegally reconnect or tamper with the electricity metering infrastructure after being disconnected due to arrears. Such customers will be dealt with in line with the applicable municipal by-law and will be slapped with a hefty fine.
Section 26(1) of the Electricity By-law states the following:
No consumer, owner, occupier or registered owner of any premises or immovable property or any other person may in any manner or for any reason whatsoever bypass the meter and/or related metering equipment of the Municipality or of a contractor on or relating to any premises, or otherwise tamper or interfere with, remove, redirect, disturb, alter, vandalise or steal any meter or other metering equipment or any service connection, service protective device, protective box or case, the supply or mains or any other electricity supply or metering assets, equipment and/or infrastructure forming part of the Municipality's electricity supply, distribution and reticulation network and/or prepayment meter system, whether owned or operated by the Municipality or a contractor and whether or not it is located or installed on or affixed to any premises or is located or installed elsewhere in relation to any premises. Such tampering, interference, removal, redirection, bypassing, vandalism and theft shall constitute an offence in terms of this by-law.
Where prima facie evidence of tampering, interference or bypassing referred to in subsection (1) exists, the Municipality has the right to disconnect the supply immediately without prior notice to the consumer. The consumer is liable for all fees and charges levied by the Municipality for the disconnection and subsequent reconnection in accordance with the approved tariffs.
Legislation further states that any person who contravenes any of the provisions of the Electricity By-law is liable to compensate the City and/or its contractor for loss of expenditure and/or damages suffered or sustained by the City and/or its contractor, as applicable, because of the contravention.
With effect from 1 July 2022 until 30 June 2023, the following tampering fines will be imposed:
- Domestic bulk supply R200 000,00
- Low-voltage (400 V) three phase R1 882 609,57
- 11 kV supply (domestic, business, commercial and industrial) R8 430 248,67
- 132 kV supply (domestic, business, commercial and industrial) R8 430 248,67
- 275 kV supply (domestic, business, commercial and industrial) R8 430 248,67
Customers whose accounts are in arrears are advised to make payment arrangements to avoid the disconnection of services by visiting any of the City's customer care walk-in centres or by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
The #TshwaneYaTima campaign will relentlessly continue with credit control measures until the R17 billion of consumer debt has been drastically reduced.