Pre-paid meter installed after nine months wait

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THE Municipality Complaints department put pressure on the eThekwini Municipality to install an electricity prepaid meter within five working days, which they failed to do in nine months.

Mr Van Rooyen, a Kloof resident, ordered and paid R1774 for a prepaid electricity meter on 14 December 2016.

Nine months later and the eThekwini Municipality still hadn’t installed the prepaid meter as per the agreement.

Chris Fourie, the national spokesperson at Municipality Complaints said: “A frustrated and disheartened Van Rooyen approached Municipality Complaints for assistance. He said he visited the eThekwini Municipality’s Customer Care Centre in Pinetown on numerous occasions during the past nine months, but the only thing he received was empty promises that the municipality will install his prepaid meter.”

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“We wrote a strongly worded letter to Sandile Maphumulo, the eThekwini Municipality’s Head: Electricity Unit, regarding this matter and demanded that the matter be resolved within seven days.’

Fourie added that he received a phone call from a surprised Van Rooyen on 13 September informing him that the municipality installed the prepaid meter.

“We would like to remind the municipal consumers that in terms of Section 19(2)(a) of the Consumer Protection Act a supplier (Municipality) is responsible to deliver goods or perform services on an agreed date and at the agreed time, or otherwise within a reasonable time after concluding the transaction or agreement.”

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If a municipality fails to deliver the goods or perform the service as per the agreement, a consumer may in terms of Section 47 of the CPA, claim a refund plus interest on the amount he paid and any costs suffered as a consequence of the municipality’s failure to do so.

The municipality’s conduct is tantamount to a breach of contract.

“It is every municipal consumer’s duty to complain if they are not satisfied with products and services even if they are not personally affected.

The Municipality Complaints department was established to assist consumers in these matters, we are eager to be of service,” said Fourie.

 

 

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  AUTHOR
Deshni Ramkissoon-Pillay
Journalist

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