Harare Mayor Muchadeyi Masunda told a recent council meeting that Zinara last year gave council about US$4 million, which was almost half of the amount that was due to the municipality.
A number of councillors called for legal action against Zinara but Masunda cautioned them saying Transport, Communication and Infrastructure Development minister Nicholas Goche had pledged to engage Zinara over the matter.
“They haven’t paid yet,” Masunda said Friday. “If the situation persists, we will have no choice but to continue rattling the cage until we get what belongs to us. We are being seriously disadvantaged by the Zinara system. We do not benefit anything at all from that arrangement.”
Councils used to issue vehicles licences on behalf of Zinara and retained the bulk of the funds for the maintenance of roads.
But the licences are now being handled by Zimpost, which collects the funds on behalf of Zinara, before disbursing the money to municipalities and other road authorities.
Zinara spokesperson Augustine Moyo said the administration gave all road authorities, including Harare, all that was due to them. He said the mandate to determine what each authority gets lies with Zinara.
“The problem lies with them,” Moyo said.
“Last year, we gave Harare US$3 650 000 for routine road maintenance which basically entails patching the roads and grass cutting but they have not yet acquitted for that money.
“We pledged to give them US$5m this year but we may decide not to give them that money should they continue failing to acquit for what we gave them in 2011.”
Moyo said inflows into the road fund remained low, with only US$80m collected in 2011 against a requirement of US$2 billion per year. Masunda said Harare required US$67m to revamp its road network.