WINDHOEK - Owners of farms in the vicinity of Windhoek will now have to pay municipal rates in terms of The Local Authorities Act 23 of 1992.
This Act defines “rateable property”, meaning “any immovable property situated within the local authority area”. According to this all the farms and private house developments around Windhoek are rateable property. Furthermore, the Act provides that the municipality can levy fees on any rateable property for the advantage of the fund of the local authority. However, there is no clear link in the Act between rates payable and service delivery. The municipality visited properties and farms outside Windhoek the past few years with the aim to do valuations on which rates can be levied. Nobody in this new target market of the municipality however has received any feedback or invoices yet to be able to evaluate whether the valuations and the rates are fair. It is presumed that the municipality will only levy the land and improvements thereon but not charge for water-, electricity-, sewerage-, refuse removal services. As soon as the valuations and levies are known, it can be investigated further and measured against the procedures as prescribed in the Act as well as on the principle of fairness.
According to the municipality, they will phase the rates in as soon as the valuations are completed.