Gweru City Council has announced plans to set up a capital development fund that will assist in financing its future capital projects in a bid to move away from over reliance on rates and service fees.
BY Stephen Chadenga
Speaking at a full council meeting last week, finance committee chairperson, Catherine Mhondiwa said the local authority was failing to complete its capital projects owing to low revenue collection.
“Council has plans to establish a capital development fund,”Mhondiwa said.
“We intend to open a bank account dedicated towards that where council would be paying $50 000 per month into that account.”
The issue, however, raised heated debate in the chambers, with some councillors questioning the source of such funds given council’s bankruptcy.
Mayor Charles Chikozho said although the idea was noble, what was worrisome was council’s capacity to raise such funds.
Ward 6 councillor, Joas Tsanyau concurred, saying raising $50 000 for a separate account might be difficult given that council was facing serious financial problems.
“If we are to raise $50 000 what are we looking at?” Tsanyau quizzed.
“Raising $50 000 for the capital development fund might not be feasible after all.”
Over the years council has been failing to finance infrastructure projects such as servicing new residential stands and maintaining its road networks among others.
Early this year, Chikozho revealed the city was collecting $1,2 million monthly against a wage bill of $1,3 million.