CBZ, Beitbridge partner in low-cost housing project 

Source: CBZ, Beitbridge partner in low-cost housing project -Newsday Zimbabwe

THE Beitbridge municipality has resolved to partner CBZ Bank in providing low-cost houses for arguably Zimbabwe’s fastest growing town lately.

At its 152nd full council sitting last week Beitbridge waltzed through a debate lasting close to an hour before a proposal by councillor Emmanuel Takutaku seconded from the floor saw the passing of the resolution.

After a second reading in the meeting at the municipality’s chambers, the council missing only the injured deputy mayor John Manatsa, made the decision which come as a relief to the 10 000 residents on the council’s waiting list.

The council’s previous session agreed on a Mutare look and learn visit by some councillors and technocrats, but no report was filed after the expedition.

Finance director Anymore Mbedzi said the failure to submit a report set a bad precedent.

“In Mutare we saw a similar project by the same bank and overall, we were impressed. We may have failed to produce a report on the trip, but we are sure it is a good thing we partner the bank for low-cost houses,” Takutaku said.

Beitbridge, with a population of about 60 000, has an acute housing shortage amplified by high rentals in the border town.

Many residents are of late failing to cope with the rentals as economic hardships gripping the country have not spared the border town.

Despite several mansions on show in the border town, which is also a regional transport hub, house delivery is failing to match demand.

It is believed CBZ will service stands and put superstructures for extension in an arrangement where beneficiaries will pay an initial deposit and instalments over an agreed period.

“I am not at liberty to discuss the details because after the resolution we are yet to meet CBZ. I am comfortable you write what you heard at the meeting,” town clerk Loud Ramakgapola said in an interview.

“Once we sit with our partner, we are able to give finer detail but basically we are challenged to complement government’s remodernisation of Beitbridge. We must complement the multi-million investments poured into the border town in the last few years,” he said.

During the meeting Ramakgapola said arrangements with land developers had their own headaches when companies relied on beneficiaries’ funds as opposed to banks and building societies which invested funds and respected agreed terms.

He said all land developers currently servicing Beitbridge had one issue or another.

In some cases, the developers failed to adhere to agreed detail and a case where two developers were charging similar prices for houses has been reported.