BULAWAYO residents have expressed concern over the state of the city’s drainage system that they claim is likely to cause flash floods and lead to loss of lives and property as rain season gets into full swing.
They urged the city council to move with pace to improve the drainage system.
On Monday, flash floods hit parts of Bulawayo resulting in several houses being flooded with water while some roads were waterlogged.
The heavy downpour pounded the city for several hours.
In an interview with the Southern Eye, Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) chairperson Ambrose Sibindi said they had received complaints from residents about the poor drainage systems.
“For example, some of the complaints came from Cowdray Park where residents said that the water was flowing into their houses due to poor drainage systems,” Sibindi said.
“In the central business district there are also quite a number of places experiencing the same problem.
“Other complaints were received from Pumula South and Old Pumula. I think the BCC needs to come up with teams that will look into these issues because if it is not looked into effectively we may end up losing lives.”
He said residents needed to play their part because in some situations, they were responsible for blocking drainage systems through dumping of waste.
Meanwhile, Kadoma Progressive Residents Association (KPRA) chairperson George Goliati said the recent incessant rains had exposed that many councils did not improve their drainage systems.
“The city’s old suburbs, Rimuka and Munhumutapa, have contended with poor drainage systems for over a decade with the council engineering department failing to repair a single drain over the years,” Goliati said.
“Rimuka Street particularly near Ndiweni up to Munda Street around Zengwe has endured poor drainage and of late raw sewage is flowing on the streets, putting residents’ lives at the mercy of communicable diseases.”
Ibhetshu lika Zulu secretary Mbuso Fuzwayo said: “Our failing economy is the key contributor because the council is no longer servicing its drainage systems like what used to happen in the past.
“The prevalence of vendors at all the corners of the city is another factor causing problems because some sell mangoes at places where there are no refuse bins to place litter.”
Bulawayo Mayor Solomon Mguni was not available for comment, while the deputy Mayor Mlandu Ncube said he was in a meeting.