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BPRA weekend activity report: 9-10 March 2013
Residents Association (BPRA)
March 11, 2013
This past weekend
(09 &10 March 2013), Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association
(BPRA) held three consultative meetings in Pumula South (Ward 27),
Gwabalanda (Ward 16) and Njube (ward 12). The meetings were meant
to provide platforms for residents to engage in dialogue with representatives
from Bulawayo City Council (BCC) and the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply
Authority (ZESA) on pertinent issues of service delivery related
to the operations of the institutions. ZESA representatives however
did not attend the meetings. The meeting in Pumula South was held
on Saturday 9 March 2013 and was attended by the councillor for
the ward, Siboniso Khumalo and eighty three residents (38 Females
and 45 Males). The one in Gwabalanda was also held on Saturday 9
March 2013 and was graced by the councillor for ward 15, Israel
Mabaleka and attended by 78 residents (32 Males and 46 Females).
Lastly the meeting held in Njube on Sunday 10 March 2013 was attended
by 112 residents (80 Females and 32 Males). The councillor for the
ward was not present, but the meeting went ahead as planned with
residents voicing their concerns on service delivery issues.
The main issues discussed at the three meetings were as follows:
water crisis inevitably dominated discussions at all the meetings.
Residents demanded to know if there were any plans to build new
dams in Bulawayo. They argued that Bulawayo’s water woes
were due to lack of vision by successive governments and local
authorities since independence. They said it was inevitable for
the city to face water shortages since there had been no dam built
since 1976. Residents also expressed concerns with the fact that
Bulawayo’s water chemicals are running out. They called
upon BCC to resolve the issue immediately to make sure that residents
have access to clean drinking water.
once again alleged that the local authority’s water billing
system was flawed as they continued to receive high bills despite
water shedding for 3 days a week. Some of the residents revealed
that their meter readings were not in-sync with readings at BCC.
They said this was an indication that residents were being fleeced
by use of estimates. They called upon BCC to invest in meter readers
and refrain from estimated readings.
were raised that BCC was continuing to attach and seize the properties
of some residents with arrears. Residents said while they understood
that this was the legal route to take, they believed that BCC
was being inconsiderate by failing to understand that the country’s
economic situation was dire thus residents genuinely cannot afford
to pay their dues. They implored the local authority to allow
residents to make payment plans as opposed to seizing their properties.
also complained about the poor state of roads in Bulawayo. They
said the situation could lead to increase in road carnage as motorists
often flout traffic regulations in an attempt to avoid pot holes.
residents bemoaned the failure by BCC to collect refuse on a weekly
basis as used to be the case yesteryear. They said it was imperative
for the local authority to refocus its attention to service delivery
as opposed to staff salaries
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