BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
CHITUNGWIZA Residents Trust (Chitrest) has demanded that Chitungwiza Municipality furnishes it with the list of residential stands which are earmarked for demolition.
Chitrest, through its lawyers Tinashe Chinopfukutwa and Idirashe Chikomba, wrote to the council on January 13 demanding the list of the targeted residential stands.
Chitungwiza is yet to respond to the letter, which was written after a leaked memorandum dated January 12, 2021 announcing plans to demolish over 11 000 illegal structures in the dormitory town, subject to a court order.
Over the years, Chitungwiza threatened to demolish thousands of houses built on spaces reserved for clinics, churches, schools, cemeteries, recreational activities, roads and under high-voltage electricity pylons.
The lawyers noted that despite council not having responded to their letter of January 13, 2021, council was interviewed by a local newspaper in the aftermath of the receipt of the letter and excerpts of the interview indicated that council would obtain a court order prior to demolishing any structures.
“We, however, note with concern that you did not respond to our request to be availed with a report on the status and progress of the regularisation exercise which we made on behalf of our client,” the lawyers wrote.
“We are instructed to remind you, as we hereby do, that in terms of section 62 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, every citizen and resident of Zimbabwe, including juristic persons such as our client, has the right of access to any information held by the State or any institution or agency of government insofar as the information is required in the interest of public accountability.
“In light of the above, we request that you furnish us with a report of the status and progress of the regularisation exercise in Chitungwiza.
“We further advise that should your office not favour us with the requested information in the next seven days, we hold instructions to institute legal proceedings to compel you to avail the requested information.”
Follow Harriet on Twitter