Amnesty period approved

WALVIS BAY Interest on municipal accounts can now be written off.

24 December 2018 | Local News

Lilo Nilenge, management committee chairperson, “The amnesty is a window of opportunity that customers can utilise to get interest written off when they settle the outstanding capital amount within a given period of time.”

Leandrea Louw - The Walvis Bay municipality has announced an amnesty period effective from 1 December to 31 May next year for the settlement of debts and writing off accumulated interest.

The announcement was made at the last ordinary council meeting this week.

According to Lilo Nilenge, the newly elected chairperson of the management committee, customers struggle to pay their municipal debts for various reasons.

“These unproductive debts accumulate high amounts of interest and the situation spirals out of control for many customers. At the end, council’s debt book is inflated with debts that have a minimal chance of collection.”

She added that interest on outstanding amounts was one of the major contributing factors to this debt and explained that in order to assist customers, council announces a period of interest amnesty from time to time.

“The amnesty is a window of opportunity that customers can utilise to get interest written off when they settle the outstanding capital amount within a given period of time.”

For the 2016 amnesty period (1 December 2016 - 28 February 2017) the capital settled was N$727 581.90 and the interest written off amounted to N$130 957.54.

For the 2017 amnesty period (1 December 2017 - 30 April 2018) the capital settled was N$2 849 886.07 and the interest written off was N$543 154.09

For the past four years, from 2014 - 2017, the total capital settled was N$11 360 922.80 and the interest amount written off totalled N$2 465 034.90.

Besides the advertising cost to inform the public about the existence of the amnesty interest and interest to be reversed, there was no other additional cost to council.

Advertising costs for the amnesty years 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 were N$7 845, N$18 062, N$5 843.48 and N$13 147.84 respectively. The cost for 2018 is estimated to be just over N$14 700.”

The management committee of the Walvis Bay municipal council also recommended that the interest on all customer accounts who settle their capital debt between 1 December and 31 May be reversed or credited against such accounts.

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