City ‘illegally’ pursuing expired debt

The City of Johannesburg (CoJ) is hounding residents who owe it hundreds of thousands of rand for expired debts.
Half of active credit consumers in Johannesburg are in deep debt because the city wants those res­idents with outstanding debts to be held liable and pay the money.
Debt Management in South Africa chief executive officer
Neil Roets said the issue came to his attention when a number of clients who were under debt re­view started receiving threaten­ing letters from the council de­manding they repay expired debt or sign an acknowledgement of debt declaration.
“And that is the problem – if a consumer signs the acknowledge­ment of debt, they will be held liable for that expired debt,” said Roets.
Roets said it was illegal for the city to hold residents liable for the debts and residents should “at all costs avoid signing acknowledge­ment of debt notices when the city threatens to cut off their water and lights”.
“The City of Joburg flagrantly disregarded two acts of parlia­ment that made it illegal for them to collect on debts that are more than three years old,” said Roets.
The City of Johanesburg’s Ntha- tisi Modingoane was not available for comment.

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