GOVERNMENT has urged all rural district councils to work towards graduating to municipalities amid indications that some of them will be awarded town status soon, with Umguza getting the status by end of year.
The remarks were made early this week by National Housing and Social Amenities minister Daniel Garwe during a tour of Kings City being developed by Radar Properties in Umguza.
He said rural communities needed to be developed so that they do not continue to rely on pit latrines for toilets.
“Government is saying out of the 10 provinces in the country, eight are rural provinces and are endowed with natural resources and rural district councils.
Umguza Rural District Council is wealthier than Bulawayo city in terms of resources, but you can only be visible if you convert those resources into infrastructure development, of which housing is part of it. We want all the RDCs to become small towns. Before the end of this year, Umguza would be given town status,” Garwe said.
He said land barons had caused a lot of suffering to people, adding that property developers should not entertain them.
Garwe paid tribute to Radar Properties for coming up with big projects, setting an example of a smart city.
“Government has come up with a regularisation policy, which would invite private partners to provide on-site services to all regular settlements around the city,” he said.
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Radar Properties chief executive officer, Elias Hwenga said the project spanned over 2 100 hectares of land, with a total development cost of US$150 million.
The project consists of 10 000 residential stands, 19 schools, four medical facilities, 15 commercial centres, 37 institutional stands and 350 industrial stands. Kings City will create a modern and vibrant community of over 40 000 people, becoming a model for sustainable and inclusive urban development in Zimbabwe and beyond,” Hwenga said.