Harare Waters chaotic billing defies logic

waterEDITOR The heartless and fraudulent culture that has been adopted by the City of Harare in its billing system especially regarding water is disappointing to say the least. Residents have been receiving letters of final demand with exorbitant figures that Harare Water is continuously failing to justify.

Residents in most low-density areas, for example Hillside, Highlands, Belvedere and the city centre have raised concern over the inflated water bills that they are getting. There are a lot of irregularities in the water consumption units that are indicated on the bills. One case is of a Belvedere resident who was overcharged for 17 months-worth of water. He only discovered this after reading his water meter and comparing the figures with those shown on his bill.

In another case, a Highlands resident was being charged for the same amount of water consumption units on a monthly basis, even though water supplies were very erratic in that area. One wonders how a resident can consume a constant amount of water on a monthly basis even when water supplies are not constant.

Most residents who live in the Avenues area blocks of flats have complained that they are getting water bills that range between US$2000 and US$10,000!

Commercial consumers bills are no less than US$500 on a monthly basis.

Residents in areas that have gone for years without water (Mandara, Glen Lorne, Greystone Park and Masasa, for example) are also getting monthly water bills ranging between US$100 AND $300 and the purported water consumption units are actually indicated on the bills!

As if that is not enough, Harare Water is threatening to disconnect water for default of payment even to those residents who have gone without water!

It defies logic to note that Harare Water is demanding money from residents who have not been getting any drop of water for years now.

Furthermore, the water department has turned a deaf ear to the residents complaints. Harare Water should be reminded that residents will not sit back and watch while they are being robbed of their hard-earned money and exposed to another cholera outbreak at the same time.

Water is a basic human right and residents should get constant supplies at all times. There should be no payment for non-existent services!


Zanu must be wary of mercenary Moyo

EDITOR Jonathan Moyos effort to win back his place in the evil party, Zanu (PF), by peddling falsehoods that officers in the prime ministers office are being paid salaries by foreign governments seems to have left him with egg on his face, after the World Bank explained contracts that have been issued to some personnel working in the prime ministers office.

As explained by the World Bank, there is a facility available to all government ministries, irrespective of whether the ministry is controlled by Zanu (PF), the MDC or independent, to request for payment of salaries for short-term contract workers working on important national projects.

One is tempted to conclude that there is nothing progressive taking place in Zanu (PF)-managed ministries. It could, instead, be the case that there is nothing developmental taking place in Zanu (PF)-controlled ministries, but that the ministers are spending all their time plotting against progressive elements in government.

Once the World Bank sponsors an activity, they would need detailed reports on what has been taking place to assess progress. Our comrades in Zanu (PF) would rather do without assistance than expose the skeletons in their cupboards.

Jonathan Moyos behaviour serves as a warning to all progressive forces that the devil is working overtime, and we should never be caught with our pants down. The good news is that the devil is finding it tough as he is now running out of ideas.

As long as the Zanu (PF)-controlled Public Service Commission refuses to formalise the employment of officers working for the prime ministers office, or any other government ministry for that matter, the affected national projects should be able to source donor funding from any donor agent legally operating in Zimbabwe for the salaries of short-term consultants to ensure that the projects in question are not adversely affected by Zanu (PF) sabotage through the Public Service Commission.

And as for Zanu (PF), they should be wary of this mercenary, whose contribution can make them worse off than they currently are. He is only trying to come back for the money.

ANON, by email

City council is letting us down

EDITOR It is with great concern that I respond to the issue pertaining to the city of Harare being sued by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) over their continuous failure to collect refuse in the city suburbs.

The city council was fined US$3,800 after having been warned by the agency to collect the refuse in June 2009. Needless to say, the money that will go to pay for this fine will be from the ratepayer. This is the same ratepayer who has to pay an exorbitant rates bill, and who has to painfully watch as what he has paid for is not delivered.

It is disheartening to note that the city council has to wait until it is sued to actually execute its mandate. Council has made collection of refuse to appear to be some sort of privilege for residents, yet it is a service that residents are paying for. As long as council demands payment of rates the collection of refuse should be mandatory.

It is about time that something be done for council to begin to realise that we the residents can no longer go on being robbed in broad daylight by men and women that call themselves the city fathers and yet openly prioritise the purchasing of luxury cars before conducting their duties.

It pains me that these men and women can go and sleep well at night while we the residents suffer the agony of watching our loved ones die of cholera simply because we lack men and women in leadership position with integrity and a heart for the people.

For the city council to not even realise the efforts that the residents are putting in by initiating clean-up campaigns is discouraging and, to add insult to injury, they continue serving us with letters of final warning with rate bills that are beyond most of our incomes.

The council should be reminded that residents have been patient for long enough and, if they continue to take us for granted, we will be forced to take action.

ANON, by email

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