THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has admitted it has failed to provide residents with an effective service delivery due to a number of pressing constraints.
Council cited the lack of financial resources for its failure despite Bulawayo mayor Solomon Mguni recently hailing residents for their timely payments of bills.
Yesterday, while virtually addressing Cowdray Park residents, councillor Kidwell Mujuru revealed that BCC was hamstrung and as a result, was struggling to deal effectively with sewer pipe blockages, among other problems.
“BCC has had many challenges of late, so hence they are failing to cope with sewer repairs, this is not only a Cowdray Park problem, but it is the whole city.
“Even in other suburbs such as Makokoba, we have tarred roads which were degraded due to an unrepaired sewer system which lasted for more than a month with council failing to repair it.
“When you go to Nkulumane, Sizinda, Pumula they are all facing the same challenges, it is all over the city,” Mujuru told residents.
Surprisingly, Mujuru went on to partially lay blame on residents, who he said were settling their bills using local currency when spares and other consumables were acquired using foreign currency.
“The truth of the matter is that council is failing to cope, we have limited resources, residents are paying in RTGS (local currency) to council, but for us to get any spares, anything outside the country, we need forex so we are now having a challenge as our currency is not at par with forex,” he said.
As if that is not enough, the forthright Zanu PF councillor further admitted that council could not cope with the demands of the sprawling Cowdray Park suburb.
“Even if you report sewer faults, I do not take even a minute to forward those faults, but the reaction is slow as I have said earlier on that we have challenges.
“Currently, as we speak, the vehicles servicing Cowdray Park are supposed to be three, but we only rely on one car, some have mechanical faults, at times we won’t be having diesel, so there are too many challenges to mention,” he said.
This, however, comes at a time Mujuru has appealed for the ward to be split into two, arguing it was too big for one councillor to effectively represent the residents.
Cowdray Park, which is one of the few suburbs still expanding in the city, has an estimated population of over 38 000 residents.