THE Harare City Council (HCC) is under fire for failing to timely attend to water and sewer pipe bursts amid concern that the unattended infrastructure is contributing to the cholera outbreak in the capital city.
Several sewer pipe bursts have been recorded across the capital, especially in high-density suburbs of Glen View, Mbare, Kuwadzana, Budiriro, Dzivaresekwa, Highfield and Mabvuku-Tafara, among other areas.
The city has also been battling to provide water, with authorities indicating that the service was being affected by power outages.
During a snap survey this week, NewsDay was informed that some sewer pipe bursts have not been attended to for months and the sewerage is freely flowing into streams feeding the capital’s major raw water supply dam, Lake Chivero.
Harare Residents Trust (HRT) representative in Highfield Power Chikonzo said: “The City of Harare has failed to repair the burst sewer pipes that are discharging raw sewage into Mukuvisi River in Paradise, Highfield.
“It seems we are still far from dealing with the cholera outbreak. Harare City Council needs to be serious on public health issues.
However, Harare spokesperson Stanley Gama told a residents dialogue forum that some residents were responsible for the sewer pipe bursts.
“City council has no option except to repair burst sewer pipes, but we also need help from organisations like this one (HRT) to educate residents on dumping unwanted things in sewer pipes. At times we remove as much as 50 tonnes of sand a day,” he said.
“Sewer pipes will never burst unless something has been put there. In Kuwadzana some time ago they discovered a whole dog dumped in the manhole. Our teams are recovering strange things in some sewer pipes.”