Deputy Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, David Mahlobo says communities must pay for municipal services. Speaking on the sidelines of the African Farmers Association of South Africa’s conference in Bloemfontein, Mahlobo said the old habits of non-payment must stop.

At the end of June this year, ten municipalities in the Free State had a revenue collection rate of below 50%.

Mahlobo says state entities are owed billions of rands because residents are not paying for municipal services.

“There’s a new tendency in our country where certain state entities, whether it’s Eskom or the water board, they are being owed billions of rands and if they are owed billions of rands they are unable to discharge their responsibilities. That’s why even when we met as government, we met as the ANC leadership over the last weekend, the principle of user-pay has to be respected. That’s why we even made a commitment that those use Eskom should be able to pay but, equally so those who are owing the water boards they must able to pay the water board,” says Mahlobo.