Water stopped, disease feared

Report
from The Zimbabwean
Published on 27 Feb 2013 View Original

by Regerai Tukutuku

The chances of a disease outbreak have increased after the local authority disconnected the water supply of residents who owe the local authority money.

More than 80 percent of households in low-income suburbs are now without water. The cash-strapped Masvingo City Council, currently embroiled in a labour dispute with workers over salary arrears, is desperately looking for money.

Some residents had their water disconnected over arrears of $5.

Masvingo Mayor, Alderman Femias Chakabuda, confirmed the water disconnection exercise but said residents with difficulties settling their debts should approach the council for a payment plan.

“We are disconnecting water supplies because we want to recover our money in order to run the city,” said Chakabuda. “We are, however, urging all residents who have difficulties in settling their debts to come forward so we can work out a payment plan,” he said.

Residents who spoke to The Zimbabwean complained the council was charging high prices for water.

“We are being charged high bills and the fact that most people are failing to pay means the they are beyond the reach of many,” said a resident who refused to be named.

“Some of us are now relying on unsafe water because the council came and disconnected water supplies,” said another local.