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Monday, July 15, 2024
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Opposition-led Gweru City Council fails to deliver

Opposition-led Gweru City Council fails to deliver

Story by Tafara Chikumira

RESIDENTS of Gweru have once again been plunged into a water crisis with most suburbs having gone for up to a month without the precious liquid.

In 2019, the government had to provide funding for the procurement of low-lift pumps in a situation that was seen as the answer to the water problems in the city but the lack of a feasibility study by the local authority in installing the pumps has seen most motors at the station being burnt beyond repair.

As if that is not enough, some council employees stand accused of procuring the wrong transformer which could not be installed at the pump station as it lacked the required specifications for the task at hand.

“We had acquired six motors which could give us a minimum of 67 mega litres of water at any given time against the city requirement of 120 megaliters. However, of these motors, only one is fully functional as all the others got burnt. We are in the process of replacing the old motors. The engineers had placed VSDs starters instead of soft starters which caused the motors to burn. On the issue of a transformer, we had bought the wrong transformer which had Issues as it could not pass the test of ZETDC requirements. We have since bought a new one which we hope to install soon,” said Gweru City Council Engineer, Masauso Store.

The city fathers also confirmed the misinformation they received from council employees in trying to cover their shortcomings.

Gweru City Council Mayor, Councilor Martin Chivhoko said, “Coming to this side has also helped us open our eyes to the situation on the ground. Sometimes we are misinformed that load shedding is creating problems with regards to the supply of water to the suburbs and yet there are no pumps here. We need to find a solution to the water problems in the city.”

The government says those involved in shoddy deals involving taxpayers’ money must be brought to book as the Second Republic has no room for incompetency and corrupt activities.

Midlands Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Honorable Owen Ncube said, “Gweru has been facing water challenges for a long time. We want an action-oriented approach to service delivery. Gweru should aim to reach the Smart Cities status being initiated by the government. Strict compliance to quality should be guaranteed. In 2019 the city received US$450 000 from the government but am disappointed that improvement is not in site. We need urgent intervention in the water problems. Am told you have been buying the wrong equipment which is now costing residents and I want to make it clear that all those responsible must be taken to account.”

The opposition-led Gweru City recently came under scrutiny for misplaced priorities after procuring top-of-the-range vehicles for its executives at a time when service delivery has reached an all-time low.

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