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Report of the Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Rural and Urban Development on service delivery by the local authorities of Gutu and Chiredzi
Parliament of Zimbabwe

May 30, 2012

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As part of its mandate on the Administration of the Ministry the Committee conducted fact-finding tours to Gutu Rural District Council and the Chiredzi Town Council. The visits were prompted by written submissions to your Committee on allegations of maladministration within the Gutu Rural District Council.

The allegations were that the residents of Gutu are supplied with water at very unfair rates by the Rural District Council. ZINWA which also supplied water was said to be charging fifty cents per cubic metre.

Six of the residential areas in the Gutu Rural District Council received water from ZINWA through the Rural District Council. Such water supplies were charged at a commercial rate of one hundred and eight cents per cubic metre. The Council would then add twenty percent administration fee and a further fifteen percent for Value Added Tax forcing residents to pay as much as one hundred and sixty eight cents. Residents felt that there was no need to add VAT on water for domestic use. Other Local Authorities like Mutare, Chiredzi and Masvingo were paying between 21 cents and 22 cents per cubic metre. Such high rates it was alleged had led to high numbers of defaulters within the District Council as residents could not the costs. Supplies were being terminated as a result.

Other allegations were on the flouting of tender procedures on goods procured, Council cash that was not banked but kept at an officer's residence, irregular and shady deals in the allocation of stands, fleecing of the Council by some debt collectors, flouting of employment procedures, political partisanship in the operations of the Council, failure to fill critical vacant posts over a long period of time, false travel and subsistence claims, failure to service stands yet prospective owners would have paid the requisite service charges.

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