Villagers confront councillor

roadside_rubbishHARARE - Irate Waterfalls residents confronted their councillor, Cephas Zibute, over the deterioration of service delivery in the area. (Pictured: Typical roadside decoration of uncollected rubbish as service delivery fails)

They expressed concern over deteriorating service delivery standards such as poor refuse collection, unavailability of suitable public toilets and unaffordable rates. The Harare Residents Trust (HRT) Programmes Coordinator, Precious Shumba, confirmed that residents confronted their councillor.

“We applaud the move made by the Waterfalls Residents to confront their local government leader councillor. Service provision in the area has gone down and they felt there was need to meet the councillor to hear what he has to say concerning their issues,” said Shumba. The councillor was forced to convene a meeting with Waterfalls Residents Committee which is an affiliate of Harare Resident Trust (HRT).

Among other issues discussed at the meeting were unaffordable rates, public toilets, refuse collection and the issue of a 2011 proposed budget which residents complained that they were not consulted about.

During the meeting, councillor Zibute assured the residents that he would ensure that the issues raised would be urgently addressed. The councillor stated that the City of Harare required up to eight different chemicals to treat the water that they drink and this has resulted in extremely high water bills. He highlighted that the City of Harare was trying to borrow US$15 million from Intefin Bank to facilitate water treatment for the residents.

“The Council is trying to raise revenue by selling cattle at City of Harare farms,” said Zibute. He stated that their actions on issues affecting the residents in their respective communities are actually controlled by the Minister of Local Government and Urban Development Ignatius Chombo. According to the councillor, this has crippled the possibility of any meaningful strategies to address the problems being faced by the residents.

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