Trenches a headache for Harare

Source: Trenches a headache for Harare | The Herald

Trenches a headache for Harare
A trench dug by the City of Harare at the corner of Sam Nujoma Extension and Cork Road has been left unattended. – Pictures: Justin Mutenda

Municipal Reporter

Service providers are frequently digging trenches in Harare to install or repair underground cables, but often they either delay refilling the trenches or they do not refill the hole and patch it properly.

This has led to service providers such as telecommunications companies, the power utility and the Harare City Council being criticised over their actions.

Harare Residents Trust director Mr Precious Shumba is one of those who expressed concern over the matter.

“The trust is concerned about the increase in the number of uncovered trenches dug by both City of Harare and telecommunication companies.”

Mr Shumba said the situation was not only restricted to the central business district, but was evident even in the Avenues area and other suburbs where a lot of trenching has taken place.

He urged the city council to engage telecommunication companies and press upon them the need to adequately cover the trenches that they dig when they lay their cables across roads in Harare.

Acting city spokesperson Mr Innocent Ruwende blamed the companies for flouting regulations and trenching the roads without notifying the city council or paying trenching fees.

“The problem is they are trenching during the night or in areas they know we will not see them in action and they leave without backfilling,” he said.

“We are calling on residents and other stakeholders to report such companies and individuals. Lately, the city has not authorised any company or individual to do any trenching.” 

The city has battled the scourge of trenching over the past decade, but without any proper solutions being proffered.