By: Justicia Shipena
The Walvis Bay municipality has finalised the writing off registered pensioners’ debt. Walvis Bay mayor Trevino Forbes revealed this during a media briefing on Friday.
According to Forbes, the Council undertook the exercise to alleviate the debt pressure on some long-suffering residents.
“Writing off of registered pensioners debt was finalised on Friday, the 27 May 2022,” he said.
He added that the write off would be reflected on the accounts as of middle June 2022 levies.
However, he said the writing off of residential customers’ services debt will be finalised later.
“This will equally reflect on the next levies scheduled for middle June 2022,” he said.
Forbes noted that the writing off process is not done in-house.
“But electronically by system experts as the number of customers is considerable.”
In April this year, Walvis Bay local authority councillor Ryan Gordon had said municipal bills of all pensioners at Walvis Bay worth 6.7 million dollars are to be written off.
At that time, this was done as pensioners could not pay for their accounts.
At the same event, Forbes gave an update on the sewage plan for the town, emphasising that sewer maintenance does not only lay with the municipality.
“It is a collective effort from the Council and the residents. It is astonishing to see the objects our maintenance teams find in the sewer lines which heavily corrode,” he said.
He added that items found in the sewer lines also put pressure on existing overloaded infrastructure.
In this light, he called on Walvis Bay residents to please take care in not depositing undesirable items into drains.
“From Council’s side, public awareness is done with the assistance of volunteers where business and residential customers are informed on the abuse of the sewerage systems,” he adds.
Forbes also said the Council has visited 3 617 places in Kuisebmond and Narraville to date.
“The program will continue, as the data received is invaluable for future planning,” he said.
He further said the Council is busy upgrading sewer infrastructure. This, according to him, is the replacement of flawed sewer main lines in Pelican Street, of which 250 meters have been replaced thus far.
The Council is also compiling the bid documents for the replacement of the mid-block sewer lines in Sandwich and Mautamanene Street in Kuisebmond. He said the replacement of this would soon commence as designs are finished.
Forbes said the replacement and upgrade of the burdened main sewer lines in Rikumbi Kandanga Road have been postponed to 2023/24.
“Construction of new lifting sewer pump stations to relieve the Kuisebmond and the Lagoon network. The project is in progress, and the department is busy reviewing the designs,” he said.
He also shared the construction of the new main pump station in Kuisebmond, stating that designs and bid documents are completed. However, the project was put on hold due to limited financial resources.
“Construction of a new lifting sewer pump station in Narraville Extension 11 is also postponed to 2023/24.”
He also said that 20 sinkholes and 70 utility holes have been repaired in Walvis Bay this year.
“We are also compiling terms of reference for the appointment of a consultant for an integrated water & sewer master plan.”