Johannesburg remains the wealthiest on the African continent. Image: Pixabay

Johannesburg’s stand against big businesses pays off

Johannesburg triumphs in court against large businesses dodging municipal service payments, reinforcing accountability principles.


Johannesburg remains the wealthiest on the African continent. Image: Pixabay

In a recent court battle, Johannesburg secured a victory against large businesses attempting to avoid paying their municipal service bills.

The High Court ruled against Malakite Body Corporate and Greenstone Crest Body Corporate, affirming the city’s right to charge them commercial tariffs.

Gauteng High Court upholds city’s authority to enforce commercial Tariffs”

The recent ruling by the High Court Gauteng Local Division on 15 April marks a resounding win for the city, upholding its right to enforce commercial tariffs. The court dismissed the appellants’ plea to overturn an earlier decision, affirming the city’s stance on charging commercial tariffs.

The appellants had argued against the commercial/business tariff, citing the mixed domestic and non-domestic nature of their estates due to the presence of Lifestyle Centres.

However, the court firmly stated, “The fact that a business is located in an estate, surrounded by residential dwelling units, does not make it ancillary to the residential use.”

This ruling reaffirms a fundamental principle: businesses must pay commercial rates. The court emphasised, “Simply put if you run a business, you pay business rates.”

Johannesburg’s legal victory underscores its unwavering commitment to fairness and equity in municipal governance, sending a powerful message that no entity, regardless of its size or influence, is exempt from civic duties.

In Johannesburg, everyone plays by the same rules. Furthermore, the judgment serves as a beacon of justice, resonating far beyond the city’s borders. It highlights the critical importance of upholding the rule of law and ensuring accountability, even when faced with formidable opposition.

Kgamanyane Maphologela, the Director of Communications and Stakeholder Relations, expressed satisfaction with the court’s decision.

He stated, “The City of Johannesburg is pleased that the rule of law has been upheld, particularly in cases involving large corporations and extensive residential developments determined to litigate against the city to evade paying for municipal services.”