Balaka District Council is haunted by water and electricity bills amounting to K10.3 million and has had its water supply disconnected for a K1.7 million outstanding bill.
Balaka District Council spokesperson Mary Makhiringa confirmed in an interview on Wednesday that Southern Region Water Board disconnected water supply at the offices for K1.7 million unpaid bill, but said the Escom K9 million bill was under dispute.
“Escom also disconnected electricity in the old council buildings for a K9 million bill, but we disputed it and it has since been revised to K300 000,” she said.
Makhiringa also said the council was doing everything possible to settle the bills.
A senior council employee confided that the council is in deep financial problems despite improved revenue collection which jumped from K47 000 to K220 000 a day.
“Workers have not been paid for three months. Water and electricity were disconnected last week.
“Garbage collection is not being done because the council is failing to buy one tractor tyre and the water bowser broke down long time ago. We hire one from Machinga where we also need to settle bills,” the worker said.
The officer also said the council is also failing to renovate part of its offices that were destroyed by fire in 2017.
Recently, Balaka district commissioner Ali Phiri conceded that the council has been losing over K150 000 daily in unaccounted for revenue.