Council teeters on edge

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

The Greater BaPhalaborwa muni-cipality in Limpopo is in deep financial crisis.

In fact the municipality is on the brink of collapse - a problem which prompted the provincial government to dispatch a team of inspectors to probe its financial status. The muni-cipality has allegedly also forced management to use revenue collection to pay municipal staff.

Sowetan has learnt that the muni-cipality owes Eskom money amounting to millions of rands. A senior official at the municipality, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the municipality spent nearly R2million on electricity every month, and that the money was never paid back to Eskom.

"At times, we wait for a week or two for the municipality to collect water bills before we are paid," he said.

Municipal spokesman Elliot Ramachela could neither deny nor confirm that the council owed Eskom.

But an official from Eskom, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed that the council owed Eskom several millions of rands.

Premier Sello Moloto has identified a number of municipalities that are faced with financial crisis. They include Makhado and Tzaneen .