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ZNOART condemns deepening corruption in municipalities

The Zimbabwe National Organisation of Associations and Residents Trusts (ZNOART) has said it is deeply concerned by corruption perpetrated by officials in urban councils.

The corruption has been exposed and has become public knowledge. The listed criminal anomalies include the selling and allocation of stands, car sales, home industries, wetlands invasions a lot more.

The Zimbabwe National Organisation of Associations and Residents Trusts is demanding the publication of the waiting list that it said should be public in all urban and rural district councils.

This will increase transparency and thus minimising corruption. ZNOART urged all municipalities to move away from the system of estimated bills that has a very negative effect on residents. 

“As much as we applaud the work being carried out by our law enforcement agents and the Zimbabwe Anti Corruption Commission (ZACC) in arresting these culprits, we feel they are not doing enough. We Demand ZACC and the Auditor General’s office should do more. We want audits in all councils and rural district councils in Zimbabwe,” said Shalvar Chikomba, the ZNOART Chairman.

The lobby group argues that corruption has robbed citizens of service delivery that they should be getting from these City Fathers said residents can no longer sit and watch while the future generations’ dreams get shattered by individuals who occupy these councils offices for the enrichment of themselves and their families.

Recently, there have been cases of corruption in Harare ‘s Westlea and Glen Norah suburbs, some parts of Masvingo urban and Karoi in Mashonaland West. Some of the culprits are in police custody.

There is a general sentiment that they should face the full wrath of the law.

“The judiciary should do away with the catch and release syndrome. We have watched them turning our recreational facilities, our wetlands, places meant for infrastructure like roads, schools into cash cows for themselves and we believe this is the time to correct everything.

“It’s very sad to note that most councils, up until now, do not have strategic plans for our cities or they don’t want to share them with residents. We wonder what the regulatory authority for these councils which is the Ministry of Local Government is doing or if it’s there. With the  COVID -19 pandemic, residents’ expectations on councils are for them to focus more on providing safe, running tapped water in our homes for hygiene and fight against this disease which has affected our health and our economy, but alas,  they are busy focusing on squeezing the ordinary resident into hunger and more desperation.”

Cases of typhoid and possibly cholera which have erupted in Bulawayo and Harare ‘s Sunningdale suburb have left residents in fear with raw sewer flowing everywhere in the suburbs.

There is a decrease in infrastructural development. In most urban areas, roads and sewer facilities are in a poor state. 

“We are also appealing to our councils to take a leading role in sensitising our residents about COVID- 19. There ought to be awareness campaigns on sanitizing, social distancing in suburbs because surely our population is on the brink of extinction as a result of this deadly pandemic, ” Chikomba added.

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende