BY KENNETH NYANGANI
THE Mutare City Council yesterday said it was not responsible for the areas that were hit by the flash floods in some parts of the eastern border town last weekend, which resulted in houses, food and clothes and other property being destroyed.
Mutare City spokesperson Sprein Mtiwi said the affected areas were not under his purview, but were managed by private land developers who failed to properly service the area.
The worst affected areas by the flash floods were the Zimta area, Dream House and part of Chikanga 3.
Mutare residents took to social media accusing the municipality of failing to construct proper drainage systems in the affected areas.
“It is very unfortunate that houses and properties were flooded and the affected people lost valuables, food and clothes. However, some people, out of ignorance and lack of proper information, are blaming council for lack of services in the above-mentioned suburbs, yet the issue of uncompleted services for Zimta and Dream House falls within the purview of the private land developer as part of the land sale agreement condition,” Mtiwi said in a statement.
He said the Zimta area in Chikanga 3 was bought by the Zimbabwe Teachers Association, and they engaged a private developer, KMP, to service the stands in 2002.
Mtiwi said the servicing was done in two phases, adding that although phase two of the Zimta scheme was already occupied, it did not have a certificate of compliance.
“The floods then hit the area before an engagement meeting was convened and with the lockdown measures, it became difficult to bring the affected residents to the round table,” he said.
On the Dream House scheme, Mutiwi said a committee was set up to service the stands, but the project was technically disbanded before sewers, roads and storm drains were completed.
He said the housing scheme had no certificate of compliance, thereby exposing the area to massive siltation, soil erosion and clogging of the undersized drainage pipes.
Mtiwi said a number of property owners constructed precast security walls, but did not create water openings, resulting in flooding.
However, he said Mutare council had since taken emergency measures to address the flooding, adding that it had committed
US$10 000 towards emergency works.
Mtiwi said this would include opening up of drains, removing silt and opening up of blocked culverts.
He said Mutare City Council was grappling with legacy issues of incomplete and un-serviced suburbs.