I recently initially thought I was reading a statement from a spokesman of Zimbabwe's Zanu-PF.
I read a Durban city notice, apparently issued by treasurer Krish Kumar, threatening ratepayers who do not pay their rates.
Kumar said those who did not pay their rates would find themselves without electricity and water.
I was particularly incensed by Kumar's arrogant threat to disconnect the water supply to pensioners.
These elderly people do not deliberately stop paying their rates. They have financial problems.
But the ratepayers are not stupid or cowed. Everyone knows that this act would be illegal and in breach of our Constitution as well as that of the United Nations.
Kumar should inform the many worried pensioners that their lights and water will not be disconnected if they initially fail to pay the exorbitant rates.
He should tell them that this cannot be done while they are waiting for their valuation objections and rebate applications to be resolved.
Municipal officials should think carefully before making wild, irresponsible threats to the very people who pay their attractive salaries.
Ratepayers will only accept a limited amount of arrogance from officials and that limit has surely been reached.
Frank Hartry, Kingsburgh