Vic Falls owed $23m in unpaid rates

SERVICE delivery at Victoria Falls Municipality has reportedly taken a heavy knock, with residents and tour operators owing about $23,4 million in unpaid rates.
Town clerk Ronnie Dube told Southern Eye that the huge debt had compromised service delivery at a time some residents and tour operators had petitioned the local authority demanding quality services.

BY NOKUTHABA DLAMINI

“We are being owed more than what we owe other institutions who provide services to us like the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa). We are
owed $23 365 995 62 million by residents, government, land, commercial and hotels, yet we only owe $8,3 million,” he said.

“Failure to pay by residents negatively impacts on service delivery. Council is unable to procure necessary inputs for routine maintenance exercise resulting in the deterioration and collapse of the infrastructure and as a result we end up having poor service delivery.”

Dube said they were failing to attract business partners and investors, as they did not have required funding in their coffers.

“It has become difficult to attract investors and business partners to expand our town, as we do not have the required cash. If we happen to find partners, they end up charging us more, arguing that we will take longer to pay, while others will be demanding immediate payment,” he said.
“I, therefore, appeal to ratepayers to settle their bills, failure to which we will resort to litigation and some other punitive measures.”

This came against complaints from residents in Mfelandawonye, Garikai and BC846, who claim to have gone for more than 20 years without running water, while tour operators have raised concern over the town’s poor road network.

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