BY STEPHEN CHADENGA
GWERU City Council has backtracked on its decision to attach defaulting ratepayers’ property and gave them two weeks to clear the arrears, Southern Eye has established.
Defaulters owe council over $2 million.
A fortnight ago, council took at least 100 people to court in a bid to force them to pay their outstanding bills, some of which date back to 2019.
The debtors had been issued with writs of execution.
“The City of Gweru would like to inform its valued residents that we have temporarily held back our execution against property to allow defaulting debtors to clear their arrears within the next two weeks or make firm commitment plans and deeds of settlement,” acting town clerk Vakai Chikwekwe said in a notice last week.
The city had also threatened to charge owing residents 19% interest on outstanding debts.
Gweru Residents and Ratepayers Association director Cornelia Selipiwe yesterday told Southern Eye that the move came as a relief to hard-pressed residents.
He, however, urged council to scrap the interest charges.
“We write to your good office showing gratitude for giving residents a two-week window period to clear their outstanding debts without attaching any
“However, the 19% interest rate on debts is very high and would you kindly consider scrapping it off for now since residents are already struggling to pay their current bills,” Selipiwe said in a letter dated May 27.
He added: “And would you kindly review the water step up tariff.”
Council is yet to respond to residents’ plea.