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Bulawayo City Council accused of double dipping, residents reach out to government

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 By Bulawayo Correspondent

BULAWAYO Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) has engaged the Local Government minister, July Moyo, in a bid to resolve a dragging housing stands dispute between the Bulawayo City Council and some homeseekers.

Some residents reportedly bought residential stands in Tshabalala Extension, Pumula South , Woodvillie and Magwegwe West from Bulawayo City Council in 2016.

Council then sub-contracted a private developer to service the stands,  but the stands have remained unserviced and as a result beneficiaries cannot develop their land.

Despite this, the local authority recently requested the affected residents to pay top up amounts equivalent to the initial prices of the residential stands, which was pegged at more than US$6000.

“(BPRA) would like to raise to your attention the housing disputes that have risen between Bulawayo City Council and housing stand beneficiaries .BPRA notes with concern Bulawayo City Council’s continued failure to honour its contractual obligations to offer fully served stands to housing stands beneficiaries.

“Residents have been left in shock as this means they have to pay for the same stands twice, which breached all the initial contractual provisions between the local authority and the housing stands beneficiaries,” wrote BPRA Coordinator, Emmanuel Ndlovu in a letter to the minister.

Ndlovu said all efforts by the residents representative body to resolve the issue have hit a snag.

“BPRA requests your esteemed office to intervene as engagements organised by both BPRA and housing stand beneficiaries themselves with Bulawayo City Council have not yielded any results as BCC has highlighted that it will not service stands until beneficiaries pay the top up amounts.

“Further, the local authority continues to engage the beneficiaries on an individual basis, which has left the less privileged beneficiaries at a disadvantage as few have agreed to pay top up amounts,” further stated Ndlovu’s letter dated 22 August 2022.

Moyo is yet to respond to the letter.