Vongai Chinjeke-Herald Reporter
Garbage has been piling in most parts of Harare including the city centre at a worrying rate as the local authority is battling to collect refuse over the past months citing a severe shortage of refuse trucks.
The city is reportedly operating with seven refuse trucks at any given time servicing Harare’s 46 wards. High density areas are the worst affected as residents are usually financially hamstrung to hire the private collectors forcing many to resort to dumping garbage at illegal dumpsites which pose a serious health hazard.
A survey in Mufakose, Tafara, Mabvuku, Kuwadzana, Warren Park and Hatfield suburbs showed that there was an increase in dumpsites with residents complaining over the local authority’s inconsistency in refuse collection.
In Warren Park 1, residents said despite paying their bills they had not seen council refuse trucks for nearly two months now.
A resident, Mrs Victoria Mwashiti, said “Council is not collecting refuse, forcing us to dispose of garbage in bushy areas at night while others are dumping it in the middle of roads. This is how we are surviving for now.”
A Mabvuku resident, Mr Mike Kaniso, said it was disheartening to note that council had abandoned its refuse collection schedule a long time ago.
“They just come when they want even at night. Unfortunately, since they come without notice most of the households are complaining that their bins are being left behind.
“In some case we dispose of our refuse in rivers so that when rains come, it is swept away and flies don’t feed there and come back to our home fields,” he said.
In a recent statement Harare City Council said it had paid for five tipper trucks and three compactors to boost its fleet.
“The equipment is expected to improve refuse collection. Payments for additional garbage trucks to be made in the following weeks,” he said.