The Harare City Council has been advised to immediately move people who were allocated stands in wetlands in Budiriro after their houses were flooded following the rains pounding the capital.
This was said by National Housing and Social Amenities Minister Daniel Garwe, after touring the flooded houses in Budiriro yesterday.
Minister Garwe, who was accompanied by Harare Provincial Development Coordinator Mr Tafadzwa Muguti, also toured Chitungwiza.
“There are people who sold land on a river basin,” he said.
“The beneficiaries have stand numbers and have been paying to council for water and sewer, but there are no services whatsoever they are enjoying.
“Harare City Council has been collecting the money and it should look for an area to relocate the affected people as a matter of urgency, an area that is suitable for human habitation.”
Minister Garwe ordered an immediate investigation into rogue Harare City Council officers who are allegedly running a syndicate that is selling land through forging papers and receipts.
He said the scam that happened in Budiriro will be dealt with internally by council “but this is unacceptable that people are located in wetlands”.
“However, people should avoid buying unserviced land,” he said.
“We know there are a lot of land barons that should be brought to book and dealt with decisively.”
Regarding flooded houses in Chitungwiza, Minister Garwe said it was the local authority’s negligence by failing to routinely clean clogged drains.
“The council is claiming that it has no capacity to hire equipment to clean the clogged drains, yet it has the appetite to steal money,” he said.
Minister Garwe tasked Acting Chitungwiza town clerk, Dr Tonderai Kasu to present a report detailing everything happening in the town by tomorrow.
Mr Muguti ordered Chitungwiza to quickly put its house in order regarding land barons, as the long arm of the law will catch up with them.