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Hoekom die geheimhouding Mafube? / Why the secrecy Mafube?


[Afr] Dit blyk dat Mafube Plaaslike Munisipaliteit (MLM) steeds daarop ingestel is om belangrike inligting van die gemeenskap van Mafube weg te steek, ten spyte van die verpligtinge van 'n munisipaliteit in terme van verpligte openbare deelname. Die onlangse rampspoedige "Budget Roadshow" is 'n uitstekende voorbeeld hiervan, waar geen van die geskeduleerde vergaderings gehou is nie en die Finale Jaarlikse Begrotingsvergadering geskeduleer vir 24 Mei in Tweeling, is die vorige dag in Frankfort gehou, sonder openbare kennisgewing en enige verduideliking. Op hierdie vergadering het die munisipale raad die begroting goedgekeur (sonder 'n behoorlike kworum!) en 'n nuwe tariefstruktuur is kwansuis deur MLM goedgekeur, maar indien wel, is dit duidelik eensydig gedoen, sonder behoorlike openbare konsultasie en promulgering, in totale verontagsaming van die bepalings van die Wet op Munisipale Finansiële Bestuur.


Die datum van implementering vir die verhoogde 2024/5-tariewe is 1 Julie 2024, maar tot op hede was die Mafube-gemeenskap, inwoners, sake-eienaars en belastingbetalers nog nie ingelig oor die tariefverhogings vir die nuwe finansiële jaar nie.


Sonder toegang tot die nuwe tariewe, spreek Mafube Besigheidsforum (MBF) ons kommer uit dat, soos in vorige boekjare, MLM heel waarskynlik weer 'n algemene tariefverhoging op grond van die verbruikersprysindeks aanvaar het, in plaas daarvan om te voldoen aan die Nasionale Tesourie-aanbevelings dat "koste van diens” in ag geneem moet word wanneer nuwe “kostereflektiewe” munisipale tariewe bepaal word.


Die Pretoria Hooggeregshof-uitspraak van 28 Junie 2024 hou verband met munisipale elektrisiteitstariefverhogings, maar na die mening van MBF moet sy uitspraak vir alle munisipale tariefverhogings oorweeg word en geen munisipaliteit behoort toegelaat te word om tariewe arbitrêr te verhoog sonder om koste-van-voorsieningsstudies uit te voer nie.

Terloops, MBF is verheug om te rapporteer dat Rural Free State (RFS) konsekwent in die beste belang van verbruikers optree en jaarlikse koste van voorsieningstudies as 'n deel van besigheidsbedrywighede uitvoer en dit betyds by NERSA indien wanneer benodig. Dit is irriterend dat MLM uit die lys van 66 voldoenende munisipaliteite weggelaat is, as gevolg van 'n nalatigheid van SALGA wie die lys voorberei het. MBF wil bevestig dat RFS ten volle geregtig is op die elektrisiteitstariefverhogings soos gepubliseer in die Frankfort Herald van 27 Mei.


Die uitspraak van 28 Junie 2024 is beskikbaar vir aflaai op MBF se webwerf.


MBF nooi inwoners, sake-eienaars en belastingbetalers uit om ons kantore by Kerkstraat 18A, Frankfort op Maandae tot Donderdae van 08h30 tot 16h00 en Vrydae 08h30 tot 12h00 te besoek. Bel of stuur 'n WhatsApp-boodskap aan Marina by 079 145 4295. Besoek ons webwerf www.mafubebf.org en volg ons op Facebook.


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[Eng] It appears that Mafube Local Municipality (MLM) remain intent on hiding important information from the community of Mafube, in spite of the obligations of a municipality in terms of mandatory public participation. The recent disastrous “Budget Roadshow” is a prime example of this, where none of the scheduled meetings were conducted and the Final Annual Budget meeting scheduled for 24 May in Tweeling, was held in Frankfort on the previous day, without public notification and any explanation. At this meeting the municipal council approved the budget (without a proper quorum!) and a new tariff structure was supposedly approved by MLM but if indeed the case, this was clearly done unilaterally, without proper public consultation and promulgation, in total disregard of the determinations of the Municipal Finance Management Act.


The date of implementation for the increased 2024/5 tariffs is 1st July 2024 but to date, the Mafube community, residents, business owners and ratepayers had still not been informed of the tariff increases for new financial year.


Without access to the new tariffs, Mafube Business Forum (MBF) express our concern that, as in past financial years, MLM most likely again adopted a blanket tariff increase based on the consumer price index, instead of adhering to National Treasury recommendations that “cost of service” must be taken into account when determining new “cost reflective” municipal tariffs.


The Pretoria High Court judgement of 28 June 2024 relates to municipal electricity tariff increases but in the opinion of MBF, its pronouncements must be considered for all municipal tariff increases and no municipality should be permitted to arbitrarily increase tariffs without performing cost of supply studies.


Incidentally, MBF are pleased to report that Rural Free State (RFS) consistently act in the best interest of consumers and perform annual cost of supply studies as a course of business and timeously submit these to NERSA when required. It is annoying that MLM was omitted from the list of 66 compliant municipalities, this was as a result of an oversight by SALGA. MBF wish to confirm that RFS are fully entitled to the electricity tariff increases as published in the Frankfort Herald of 27 May.


The Judgement of 28 June 2024 is available for download on MBF’s website.


MBF invite residents, business owners and ratepayers to visit our offices at 18A Kerk Street, Frankfort on Mondays to Thursdays from 08h30 to 16h00 and Fridays 08h30 to 12h00. Call or send a WhatsApp message to Marina at 079 145 4295. Visit our website www.mafubebf.org and follow us on Facebook.


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