No title deeds for illegal settlers: Minister

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BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
NATIONAL Housing minister Daniel Garwe has told Parliament that the responsibility of issuing title deeds lies with central government and local authorities, adding that those illegally settled would not be issued any title deeds.

His statement came after President Emmerson Mnangagwa last month promised Epworth residents that they would be issued with title deeds.

Mnangagwa’s statement was viewed as a vote-buying gimmick as the country heads towards March 26 by-elections and the 2023 harmonised elections.

On Wednesday during the National Assembly question-and-answer session, Garwe said: “The responsibility to provide title deeds lies within the central government and local authorities. We have started working on the mapping process in areas like Harare South  and Caledonia. The mapping is done to identify people that are settled in areas with masterplan layouts, where we have people that are legitimately settled and those that are illegitimately settled, as well as those that have put up houses in areas  where there were supposed to be roads and social amenities.

“Those that are illegitimately settled will not be issued with tittle deeds. However, suitable pieces of land are going to be identified by the Local Government ministry for them,” Garwe said.

Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said the government would look at the issue on a case-by-case basis and he encouraged people to desist from building at undesignated sites.

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