Tariff Increases In Perspective

Whilst the outrage expressed against eThekwini municipality’s proposed tariff increases is more than justified, it needs to be focused on those allied with the ANC whose support facilitates the increases.

Without the craven support of 12 or 13 single-seat, political prostitute so-called parties, the ANC’s Marxist march of the impoverishment of the masses and destruction of the middle class would be blunted.

The combined support of those political Lilliputians effectively holds the rest of us hostage to the ANC’s cavalier abuse of the municipality’s dwindling revenue sources.

In their quest to promote equality in poverty, Marxists disdain frugality and the common sense of the adage of cutting one’s coat according to one’s cloth. All the intended tariff increases not only exceed the inflation rate of six percent but with the exception of refuse and property rates, they are more than double the inflation rate.

With debts exceeding several billion Rand and residents unable to sustain metro bill payments, it is interesting that some of us are receiving text messages from eThekwini municipality expressing gratitude “for keeping your account up to date.” But coming in the wake of the intended steep increases in tariffs, that message is disingenuous because it means we can rely on you to keep paying more for less.

In the real world of economic hardship, to avoid further impoverishment of residents and ratepayers, there should be drastic cuts in the cadre-bloated 28,000 staff of the municipality; the sale of land it cannot afford to manage, and the ditching of debt-mired operations like the bus company and uShaka. The ridiculous R3,9 million salary of city manager Mbhele should be halved as an expression of solidarity with the hardship of the masses.

But as the Marxist ANC and its craven allies march the once debt-free, functional city of Durban to the precipice, the time to revisit an idea that has been raised previously has surely arrived. To escape from the clutches of ANC dystopia and to salvage something from the wreckage it has caused, eThekwini Metro needs to be disbanded and a return made to smaller, sustainable municipalities that reject socialist ideology.

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