The ruling ZANU PF has said Harare City Council’s demolition of houses is not going to take place as the party is going to engage the local authority to ensure that the illegal structures are regularised.
The sub-national government is planning to demolish illegal houses in Kuwadzana following a directive from the Ministry of Local Government for local authorities countrywide to restore order in cities.
Illegal structures have been sprouting in many cities and towns countrywide with some being erected in areas reserved for recreational facilities or over water or sewer lines.
Zanu PF has engaged the Ministry of State For Harare province through its Harare Province Chairperson, Goodwills Masimirembwa. The party says people will never be homeless due to the local authority’s actions. Masimirembwa said:
There is no demolition of houses which is going to take place here because land barons are the ones who duped you. As a party, we are committed to ensuring that we follow the council by-laws in regularising these housing stands.
Kuwadzana Constituency Shadow Member of Parliament, Betty Nhambu- Kaseke claimed that in 2016, the MDC led Harare City Council identified the land in question for settlements but was allocating stands along party lines.
She added that some Zanu PF supporters were also settled thereby “unscrupulous land barons.
Masimirembwa urged residents of the area to cooperate with the office of the Provincial Development Coordinator, which is scheduled to conduct investigations to identify land barons who duped the unsuspecting land seekers.
Harare Mayor, Councillor Jacob Mafume, recently said some of the illegal structures are being built on state land which the central government grabbed from the local authority.
He added that they were being demolished as they were in violation of the Harare City Council’s plan.
Opposition MDC and ZANU PF have for long been fighting for control of urban authorities most of which are run by the opposition party.