Residents take council to High Court over water crisis

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By Masvingo Correspondent

MASVINGO residents have approached the High Court seeking an order forcing the city council to restore water supplies.

In addition to the court action have also vowed not to pay their monthly bills.

Locals have endured more than a week without running water.

The urgent chamber application was made by the Masvingo United Residence and Rate payers Alliance (MURRA) on behalf of the residents.

The application, filed by a member of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, lists Masvingo City Council as one of the respondents.

The case is expected to be heard in the Masvingo High Court on Tuesday next week.

“The Constitutional rights of the applicants and all those on whose behalf they bring the application are under imminent threat as a direct result of the actions and inactions of the Respondent,” reads the court application.

“Specifically, in that the Respondent threatened and continues to threaten not to supply water to the residents for it is now seven days without a supply of running water to the residents of Masvingo.

“The Respondent has failed to take action for the past seven days to restore water supply to the residents of Masvingo.

“The Applicants aver that the continuation of the above actions and inactions will likely cause irreparable harm to the Applicants and all those they represent and therefore seek an interim Mandatory interdict compelling the Respondent to supply water to the residents,” reads part of the application.

The water crisis has sparked fears of an outbreak of water borne diseases as residents are now depending on boreholes drilled by NGOs which the local authority condemned as unsafe for human consumption.

Council has blamed the problem on the brake-down of a major pump at the main Bushmead water works due to old age.