BY MIRIAM MANGWAYA
CHIVHU residents have given Chikomba Rural District Council (RDC) a five-day ultimatum to provide running water at the major market place and bus terminus following a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in the country.
The residents have been demanding running water at the market for more than three weeks on various social media platforms including WhatsApp and Facebook.
In a letter dated August 3, 2020, written by lawyer Tafara Nsingo of Nsingo and Associates, Chivhu Residents and Ratepayers Alliance (CHRRA) called on council to respect the residents’ constitutional right and provide running water within five working days and threatened legal action if the council fails to comply.
According to the letter, seen by NewsDay, the local authority is mandated to ensure proper sanitation at the market place which has more than 200 vendors.
“Instructions being that our client has, on numerous occasions, approached and engaged your highly esteemed office with requests that the council provides clean running water at the Buhera market place and bus terminus. Without clean running water, the district is certainly nursing a dangerous time bomb particularly with this serial COVID-19 and other contagious diseases such as typhoid and cholera,” the letter read.
Chikomba RDC chief executive officer Bullen Chiwara, however, professed ignorance of the letter when NewsDay contacted him for comment.
“I only heard that the matter was being discussed by residents on social media. I haven’t yet received any formal communication about the issue,” he said.
Chikomba district COVID-19 taskforce chairperson Michael Mariga said he was not authorised to speak to the media.
CHRRA chairperson Collen Zvarevashe said they wrote the letter to hasten council reaction on the issue because Chivhu, as a transit town, was at high risk of coronavirus transmission.