Withholding funds is wrong

THE mushrooming of white ratepayer's associations is disturbing.

THE mushrooming of white ratepayer's associations is disturbing.

This development is even more worrying because of these organisations'action of withholding money that is due to municipalities.

The last time I checked, it was illegal for citizens to withhold money that is owed to municipal services.

Do I hear someone shouting: "But these bloody municipalities are unable to render services!"

Be that as it may, are we going to cut our noses to spite our faces?

Undoubtedly, our municipalities are facing complex challenges and a lot needs to be done to turn the situation around.

I do not believe that the government on its own will succeed in this mammoth task.

All of us have to make a small contribution to develop our areas. So I am taken aback by the belligerence of white ratepayer's associations.

There might be reasons for their stance but I am not convinced these groupings have exhausted all avenues at their disposal to engage robustly with municipalities in finding an amicable solution to their problems.

This does not in any way justify the arrogant, dismissive and sometimes unresponsive attitude that some of our municipal leaders have adopted.

Neither does it exonerate those officials who are tasked to execute certain duties.

There needs to be a paradigm shift on both sides so that resilient partnerships for development can be forged.

Our municipalities deserve better. So let us contribute to change rather than become spoilers.

Mogomotsi Mogodiri, Johannesburg