MUTARE mayor Tatenda Nhamarare has denied speculative reports that he was planning to hire touts to torch 760 illegal structures built by members of the Zimbabwe Homeless People’s Federation Association (ZHPFA).
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
His remarks came after ZHPFA chairperson Luke Charles Mukungati told NewsDay yesterday that members of the association had information that Nhamarare was planning to unleash touts on them.
“There was a commuter omnibus with touts that patrolled our area on Sunday and when we enquired over its mission, we were told that Nhamarare had hired them. A few hours later, we saw some people, but they fled when they were confronted by our people. We are aware that the mayor wanted the touts to set ablaze our structures,’’ he said.
But, Nhamarare scoffed at the allegations, saying: “Mutare City Council has enough enforcers of by-laws and that has not yet started. Those are illegal structures and we are going to start the process in a few days to come. Maybe those people are criminal elements who are taking advantage of how they are staying.”
The local authority, through its legal officer Tawanda Kanengoni, has already approached the High Court seeking an eviction order against the illegal settlers.
The council claims the area is inhabitable as there is no running water and ablution facilities.