Mabuza on Eskom: Apartheid-era habit of non-payment must end

Mabuza on Eskom: Apartheid-era habit of non-payment must end

- Deputy President David Mabuza has called for the apartheid-era culture to end

- The ANC veteran has explained that during the struggle, the party had encouraged non-payment aimed at the government

- Now, with Eskom battling to cover its debt and municipalities owing billions to the utility, he is addressing the issue

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David Mabuza has called on citizens to pay their bills and ensure debts to municipalities and state-owned enterprises are paid up.

Speaking to members of the National Council of Provinces, the Deputy President explained that in the struggle to bring about liberation in South Africa, the ANC had encouraged citizens to not pay the government for services rendered.

Now that democracy has dawned on the nation, Mabuza has been forced to call for that culture to stay in the past:

"The struggle is over. At the time we were fighting a system. We wanted to pull down a system so we encouraged people not to pay. Some of you here were part of the campaign. Now we must come with the same push for people to pay."

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READ ALSO: Soweto residents refuse to pay Eskom - "ANC promised free electricity"

The Deputy President's comments come as Eskom battles to service its mounting debts, of which municipal arrears constitute R19.9 billion. reported that of this debt Soweto comprised of the largest outstanding amount at a staggering R17 billion.

Mabuza had also called on government officials to ensure that payments to the utility are made on time:

"Accounting officers and executing authorities must take measures against officials in their departments not complying with the Public Finance Management Act."

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