BY STEPHEN CHADENGA
PEOPLE with disabilities (PWDs) in the Midlands province have implored the Gweru City Council (GCC) to cancel their debts citing COVID-19-induced economic challenges.
In a letter dated May 9 addressed to town clerk Vakai Chikwekwe, the chairperson of the National Council of Disabled Persons of Zimbabwe (NCDP) Gweru chapter, Timothy Mpofu said the livelihoods of PWDs had been seriously affected by the pandemic, which made it almost impossible for them pay their outstanding bills.
“It is in this regard that as PWDs we make a humble appeal through your office for the local authority to write off the debts accumulated to date, and cease further or future monthly billing since we no longer have income to meet payments,” Mpofu’s letter read.
“It’s also worth noting that some of the PWDs who own council properties are now old people who have no income since they never worked in their lifetime.”
Mpofu said as NCDP they were worried that council was threatening to take legal action against defaulting PWDs.
“Your office has begun to threaten owing PWD residents with debt collection and handing them over to debt collectors,” he said.
Chikwekwe had not responded to questions sent to him by Southern Eye at the time of going to print.
However, since last week, Gweru council has been attaching property of defaulters.
The local authority is owed nearly $2 billion by residents in unpaid rates.