Families bitter with council over stands double allocation

Source: Families bitter with council over stands double allocation | The Herald


Families bitter with council over stands double allocation
Mr Chideme

Blessings Chidakwa

Municipal Reporter

TWELVE families allocated residential stands in Warren Park D and made full payments to the Harare City Council some six ago are now up in arms with the local authority after realising other people occupied the same land due to double allocation.

Despite fully paying US$3 000 each for the land intrinsic value in 2015, the 12 families are yet to get their stand numbers.

They are being tossed around, referred from one office to the other without, success.

An allocation letter (reference number CA/9/137/1) issued in the name of the dozen’s cooperative, Kunzwana Housing Cooperative, on May 8 2015 reads:

“Please be advised that council allocated 12 unserviced residential stands on plan number TPX/WR/06/12 in Warren Park township, Harare item 11 of the Education, Health, Housing and Community Services and Licensing committee meeting dated February 17, 2015 and adopted by council on February 19, 2015.

“Council requires you to pay 30 percent intrinsic land value deposit per stand which amounts to $2,50 per square metre. It should be paid within 30 days from the date of receiving the letter and the remainder 70 percent should be paid within three months.” 

The beneficiaries paid survey fees to a CABS bank account, First Street branch, before the set deadline.

They were given individual provisional offer letters on July 29, 2016 signed by former acting housing director Mr Matthew Marara.

“You shall contribute financially together with other beneficiaries towards the cost of servicing of the stand under council supervision to the satisfaction of council,” reads the letter from council.

“That you shall pay US$1 500 being a provisional deposit for development fees required for servicing of the stand.” 

Harare City Council spokesperson Mr Michael Chideme urged people to report such cases to council for investigation.

“We urged people to report such cases to us for investigation and resolution of the disputes,” he said.

In one of the correspondences dated October 19, 2018, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing acknowledged receiving the complaint from the aggrieved 12 home-seekers.

“Please be advised that we have referred your matter to the Provincial Administrator for Harare Metropolitan province so that they clarify the issue you raised as well as proffer a way forward,” reads the correspondence written by an official only identified as Gopozah.

“The inconvenience that this long-standing matter has occasioned to your cooperative is sincerely regretted.”

On November 4, 2020, Local Governance director in the office of the Provincial Development Coordinator Mrs Catherine Kampila engaged council over the matter, but still nothing materialised.

“This office has continuously received complaints from Kunzwana Housing Cooperative about your failure to deliver residential stands as promised by your council,” reads part of the letter.

“May we please be favoured with information to understand why it has taken this long to fulfil a council resolution passed on February 19, 2015 as stated in your letter to Kunzwana Housing Cooperative reference CA/9/137/1 dated May 8 2015.” 

The beneficiaries were on December 11, 2019 ordered to pay interview fees amounting to $350 and $600 for renewing housing waiting list at the Mbare banking hall in respect for some stands in Westlea, but nothing has materialised from that front.