By Robert Tapfumaneyi
THE Harare City Council has ordered churches scattered across the city’s residential areas to reduce their noise levels during their praise and worship sessions.
The issue came up at the feedback meeting that was held between clerics and Harare Mayor Herbert Gomba, who was accompanied by several councilors this week.
Reports abound of complaints from residents over the indiscriminate use of public address systems by churches especially in residential areas at night.
“It was the concern raised by our residents, noise coming from the loud speakers be it from the church, or from the preachers, is just too much,” Christopher Choto president of Zimbabwe Christian Ministers Association said.
“It was noted at the meeting (first meeting) that lets play our part as churches and address this issue of noise. Our public address systems should only serve those people that are intended to be served with that sound.”
City fathers in the capital have since ordered all church services that use public address systems to close by 7pm.
In response the churches leaders have sent their public address system operators to sound management training.
Choto said several technical operators from various churches were invited to attend a sound engineering workshop.
“We later had a live sound engineering workshop on the 16th of March and we thank all churches who responded to the call to have their engineers go through the training as we try to address this challenge,” the cleric said.
Councilors said they were also disturbed by the manner in which congregates park their vehicles during church services and may consider towing them away if the chaos continues.
To this Choto who was representing the other church groups said they would work to correct the anomaly.
“We noted that the churches’ responsibility is that we don’t obstruct other motorist who are using the roads during our church services,” he added.