Councils shocking land audit to be made public soon

kundiona_universityMARONDERA - The long-awaited Marondera Municipalitys land audit will be made public at a full council meeting before end of this month and the results are shocking. (Pictured: The only structure Kundiwona erected at the so-called University Site)

The report was compiled by experts from Domboshava Government Training Centre to clarify what land the council owns and how it is distributed.

The land audit report is finally out. The Town Clerk, Josiah Musuwo, will forward it to the council chairperson for lands committee, councilor Carlos Modzongo. The full council meeting where the report will be made public for the first time will be open to anyone willing to attend, said the Mayor, Farai Nyandoro, last week.

Though he would not divulge findings of the report, sources say it reveals that former Zanu (PF) city fathers and other top party officials were at the centre of corrupt practices and irregularities exposed.

Among the most shocking findings, Zanu (PF) top official and founder of UMAA Group of Colleges, Cleopas Kundiwona, had nine hectares of commercial land given to him for an equivalent of $500 by the former Zanu (PF) council. He reportedly indicated that he wanted to construct a university on the site and went on to pay the amount in worthless Zimbabwean bearer cheques. When the land audit team went on the ground, it was shocked to find that instead of the recorded nine hectares, Kundiwona had some 20 hectares. This suggested that he occupied an additional 11 hectares without legitimate approval from council, said a highly placed source within council management.

Following media reports about a council land audit having been launched, Kundiwona stopped work on the site where he had erected some concrete pillars as part of the university structure. He is currently removing piled bricks and pit sand from the site.

In the bushes out of public sight at the property, men armed with chain saws are indiscriminately cutting down trees for use as firewood at UMAA College in Dombotombo. Some of the wood is finding its way onto the market.

From the way trees were cut down, one could tell Kundiwona was desperate to make a quick dollar out of the illegally occupied land before council decides on his fate. If he really intended to clear the ground for construction purposes, he would be uprooting the trees, not cutting and leaving stumps, said a council official.

The official also said. If the report reaches the public with all pages intact, it would also expose that land officially intended for a college by Herentals Group of Colleges, was unprocedurally donated by the then council to the Zimbabwe Republic Police. Multiple stands and unofficial ownership of land by some residents and council employees also dominated the report. Like Kundiwona, some residents went on to acquire bigger pieces of land than agreed with council, he added.

Marondera Municipality has been losing thousands of dollars of potential revenue to fraudsters, as some dishonest residents, in connivance with council workers, illegally connected water and sewer systems to council main lines. The audit has unearthed that, while the municipality accounted for some 11 000 properties, more than 22 000 households and other potentially income generating properties should be under its control.

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