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Harare pavements now death traps
Community Radio Harare (CORAH)
January 16, 2013

Take a walk along Harare's street pavements, chances of encountering uncovered holes with a potential of stumbling or getting you injured are very high unless you skirt around them.

It gets worse during the night in badly lit streets where people have been injured after being trapped into open holes that have remained uncovered for months.

A Waterfalls man identified as Spencer blames the local authority for failing to cover pits along some pavements and streets in the city centre.

"It's like the potholes in our main roads, holes on pavements must be covered. The City Council must cover the pits to avoid dangers associated with them when people get trapped," he said.

Chris, a vendor in the Central Business District (CBD), said he has seen a number of people breaking their legs after stepping in open holes that have characterised most pavements in the city.

These holes are posing serious dangers to the lives of city dwellers. They are also causing traffic congestion in the CBD which in many cases results in accidents, he said.

A taxi driver who preferred anonymity, said city authorities should put danger warning signs to caution drivers. "They put moulds of mud on the road and forget to put danger warning signs. As a result, our cars get damaged without any compensation. Our roads are now jungles because of council," said the visibly angry driver.

Abraham Masembura of Waterfalls said this morning (Wednesday) he witnessed a car veering off the road as the driver tried to avoid a pit. "It seems council workers are going around digging trenches just to meet their hours of work without supervision and are not worried about the plight of motorists and pedestrians. Today, l witnessed a car skidding after the driver had tried to avoid a pit," he said.

Contacted for comment Harare City Council spokesperson Leslie Gwindi said council workers are always encouraged to put warning signs whenever they dig trenches. "We constantly remind our workers to get rid of the pits. However, it depends on the type of pipe they would have mended some of them need to be open for some time," Gwindi said.

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