BY XOLISANI NCUBE
Harare mayor Herbert Gomba yesterday engaged Finance minister Mthuli Ncube over the city’s financial challenges, which include lack of foreign currency to procure water treatment chemicals as well as to buy machinery for service delivery.
Gomba confirmed the meeting, which was attended by his deputy, Enock Mupamawonde, town clerk Hosiah Chisango and acting finance manager Stanley Ndemera.
“We met the Finance minister to discuss matters of importance to the city. Among the matters discussed include the removal of penalties on our Zimra [Zimbabwe Revenue Authority] debt and how the minister can help the city to access money it is owed by government departments,” he
Harare owes the tax collector more than US$20 million minus penalties, but is also owed in excess of US$100 million by various States agencies, which include the ministries of Defence, Home Affairs and Transport.
“We also discussed the procurement of water chemicals, government debt to the city, joint ventures, devolution and how the city’s transformational agenda is contributing to the development of the country,” Gomba said.
Government is also obliged to give Harare at least $95 million in health grants, in accordance with the 1976 agreement.
The Health and Child Care ministry is obliged to reimburse 50% of the city’s health services department expenditure annually.