via Gweru City Council in the red | The Source November 25, 2013
Gweru City Council, which runs one of the four largest municipalities in the country, has incurred an $8 million deficit in the just ended financial year, mainly due to a government edict to cancel ratepayer debt, an official said on Monday.
The local authority’s director of finance Edgar Mwedzi said council managed to collect only $26 million in revenue from its targeted $34 million.
He said the deficit was largely due the cancellation of bad debts, coupled with non-payment of rates and service charges by households and businesses.
“We incurred a deficit of about $8 million. We failed to reach the revenue target we set at the beginning of the year mainly due to cancellation of bad debts. The other challenge we also encountered is that our ratepayers have continued to default,” he said.
Gweru City Council is owed $13 million by industry and commerce dating back to 2009 when the country introduced the multi-currency regime.
However the local authority is considering slashing the debt by half.
Council has also proposed an unchanged budget for 2014.