HomeNewsChi-Town residents threaten to boycott rate payments

Chi-Town residents threaten to boycott rate payments

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ANGERED by council’s failure to provide an effective service delivery, Chitungwiza residents on Wednesday threatened to boycott paying rates.
The threats come at a time the dormitory town is struggling to provide water, collect refuse and repair roads.

BY VIMBAI MARUFU

Residents who spoke to NewsDay at a public meeting organised by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) in collaboration with Chitungwiza Residents’ Trust (Chitrest) on socio and economic rights said council was failing to provide service yet they religiously paid their rates.

“As residents in this town, we are now fed up with our local authority’s failure to provide services for us and it’s high time we take action by stopping to pay the rates,” said Lizzy Taruvinga (43) from St Mary’s suburb.

“We should take this issue to the courts because it is our right to have water and the authorities should be accountable for the resources available to them.”

Another resident from Zengeza 3, Benard Mazhindu, said: “It is our right to have water, but the relevant authorities are always saying they are making efforts to make water available to the people yet nothing is being done. Currently, some of us are drinking unsafe water.”

Chitrest co-ordinator Marvelous Khumalo said residents were concerned about the failure by council to offer effective service delivery.

“We have considered taking the authorities to court, but we want the ordinary residents to drive that process. So at the moment we are carrying out training workshops to empower them to stand up and defend what they understand and what they know,” Khumalo said.

“We want them to stand up and fight for their rights, but the issue of going to court will be a measure of last resort after exhausting all the possible avenues like lobbying the councilors and service providers .If we fail with those negotiations then we will have no other option save to take the matter to the courts.”

ZLHR projects lawyer Agnes Muzondo said: “Our leaders are supposed to be accountable for the revenue they have and should provide these amenities for us. There should be plan in place which is clear and shows how those resources are going towards the enjoyments of these socio-economic rights.”

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