BY PRAISEMORE SITHOLE
THE Matabeleland Institute for Human Rights (MIHR) has petitioned the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) over the poor state of the city’s road network.
Motorists have attributed the increased number of accidents to bad roads which impede safe driving.
Recently, transport associations accused the government of failing to provide council with adequate funds to rehabilitate the road network which has of late worsened due to the rains.
MIHR co-ordinator Khumbulani Maphosa said they were demanding answers from BCC on how much it was given by Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) for road development.
“We hope you are aware of the current public discussions and debates on the devolution funds and if BCC should channel the funds towards water or roads,” Maphosa said.
“We ask council to furnish us with current information which will help sharpen and inform our discussion and input into the subject matter and also give factual and proper information to our structures and residents.”
Maphosa said they needed to know when the local authority last received road funding.
“When was the last time the local authority received funding from Zinara to support roadworks? How often should Zinara remit to the local authority? How much is the local authority projecting to complete the resurfacing of potholes in the city?”
“Apart from Zinara funds, what are the other sources of funding the local authority relies on for road maintenance,” Maphosa said.
MIHR also asked council to disclose information on water funding.
“Section 7.4.5 of the Zimbabwe Water Policy (August 2012) stipulates that the government will provide interim subsidies to urban authorities through PSIP (Public Sector Investment Programme) and development partner financing that will be co-ordinated within a water sector investment framework,” Maphosa added.
“When was the last time BCC received such subsidies and how much was it? What are the top priority water funding needs of the local authority and at what cost?
How much did BCC collect as pipeline levy during the US dollar currency regime period and what were the funds used for?”
Last year, BCC said funds allocated by Zinara were inadequate to meet the city’s road rehabilitation needs.
Follow Praisemore on Twitter @TPraisemore