Council moves to improve Harare drainage

HARARE City Council has embarked on several measures to address poor drainage systems in the Central Business District (CBD), the local authority’s acting corporate communications manager Innocent Ruwende has said.

This comes as the capital’s CBD has seen major flooding in the past week, giving both motorists and pedestrians a hard time to navigate around the city.

The situation has led to an outcry from residents who have challenged the city fathers to step up in providing quality service.

Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, Ruwende said the city had already deployed five teams to work on addressing the drainage challenge in Harare.

“As we speak we have five teams in the CBD that are going around unblocking drains and also in other parts of Harare, the high and low density suburbs. 

“We have also embarked on putting catch-pit covers so that debris does not get in because they are the ones that cause blockages.

“There are several places that have been worked on so far. Maybe I can name a few, Robert Gabriel Mugabe Road and Cameroon Street as well as corner Cameroon and Albion. 

“With concrete catch-pits is Robert Gabriel Mugabe, the full length Albion and other various places. Meanwhile, Ruwende also bemoaned poor waste management by residents who use drains as dumping sites.

“But our biggest concern to the public is that the public should not throw away litter because what happens is that litter ends up in drains and causes blockages. Sometimes what would happen is we go and unblock then before you know it, the drains are blocked again.

“The fact that people throw litter in drains is also a cost to the city, but the city with its limited resources is working to unblock areas that we are identifying. 

“You will appreciate that there are some drains that will be flooded and become a risk for someone to work there. 

“So, the team will have to wait for the water to subside and start working, the places have been identified and there are teams that are going around Harare working to unblock drains,” he said. 

All this comes as Harare residents accuse the city fathers of not doing enough to return the capital to its Sunshine City status amid deteriorating service delivery.

On the other hand, the central government blames the MDC for allegedly mismanaging several local authorities under their control, including the capital city, while the opposition accuses the minister of Local Government July Moyo of overstepping his mandate by interfering in city affairs.