EMBATTLED Chitungwiza town clerk, George Makunde yesterday said the cash-strapped council needs to embark on a massive regularisation process of structures illegally built throughout the town to raise resources required for service delivery and to pay its debts.
BY ALBERT MASAKA
Makunde said council would revisit areas that had been identified with the view to formalise processes towards regularisation.
Last week Zanu PF youths and scores of other residents stormed council offices demanding the ouster of Makunde and his management accusing them of corruption and mismanagement.
This was after the messenger of court towed away several utility vehicles over a $4,2 million debt owed to Nissam Private Limited for the design and layout of Nyatsime township.
The demonstrators appealed to Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere to axe the managers as the latest attachment of council property had paralysed service delivery in the town.
Makunde said residents found to have constructed structures without following council procedures should be penalised by council.
Chitungwiza has almost 10 000 complete houses that were not in the council database due to various reasons, some of which are court orders and pending court trial proceedings that were beyond council’s purview, the town clerk said.
He added that there were also more than 4 000 stands yet to be put in the council database. These stands include those that are yet to have layout and site plans approved in terms of procedure.
Other properties were also sold outside council procedures and have not been put in the data base.
“It will be to council’s advantage and benefit to have all these properties regularised as it will be able to raise resources required for service delivery,” Makunde said.
“Cases awaiting trial at the courts whilst they cause sanity to prevail, they do not have much benefit financially to council hence the need for regularisation.”
Makunde said the move would address the current issues council was battling with, where creditors were constantly threatening to attach property to recover debts and the salary backlog which “continues to rise to unacceptable levels hence denting employee motivation”.
Council is owed almost $62 million by ratepayers and residents and service delivery is not at its best as obsolete equipment is being used, he said.