gtag('config', 'UA-12595121-1'); Harare City Council Cedes Key Services to Govt Ahead of SADC Summit – The Zimbabwe Mail

Harare City Council Cedes Key Services to Govt Ahead of SADC Summit

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HARARE, Zimbabwe — In preparation for the upcoming SADC summit in August, the Harare City Council has temporarily handed over control of critical services, including waste management, public transport management, and road rehabilitation, to the Government.

The decision follows assessments indicating that the council, hampered by capacity constraints, could not independently provide the clean, safe, and conducive environment required for the regional summit.

As part of the initiative, 120 new refuse trucks are being procured for Harare and other local authorities. Extensive roadworks have commenced in several suburbs to minimize traffic congestion during and after the event. Property owners along Airport Road and roads leading to Mt Hampden, the main summit venue, have been given until July 31 to improve their properties’ outlook.

The Government is also engaging the private sector to assist in solid waste management after the council acknowledged its limitations.

Chief Director of Spatial Planning and Development in the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works, Mr. Shingirayi Mushamba, emphasized that the programme aims for long-term urban renewal in Harare, beyond the summit. “The living conditions of people is what we are targeting as we improve service delivery,” he stated. “The SADC Summit will come and go, but what we really want to do is to use it as a launchpad. Whatever standard we achieve, we must maintain it going forward. In fact, we must improve further.”

The Government’s direct involvement in service delivery is expected to significantly improve the city’s overall outlook. Mr. Mushamba highlighted the successful implementation of waste treatment projects like the Pomona waste-to-energy plant and the ongoing procurement of 120 refuse compactors for local authorities to ensure proper waste management.

The Government is also focusing on modernizing Harare’s public transport system by attracting private investment to rebuild the bus fleet. The plan includes a transition towards a modern electric bus system, with negotiations underway to introduce zero-emission vehicles. Road rehabilitation efforts aim to reduce congestion and improve travel times, with plans to upgrade bus termini across the city.

Mr. Mushamba outlined the Government’s multi-faceted approach to public transport improvements. “The first is to crowd in private sector participation. We are working behind the scenes with financial institutions and transport operators to rebuild the available fleet. We have also been looking at how we can modernize the rolling stock, moving away from diesel-powered engines to electric buses.”

In addition to roadworks on major routes, the Government plans to ensure all roads are in trafficable condition to reduce congestion and enhance travel efficiency. Upgrades to bus termini across major cities are also in the pipeline.

Zimbabwe will host the SADC summit from August 8 to 18, with these extensive preparations ensuring the city is ready to welcome regional leaders and delegates. The Government’s interventions aim to create lasting improvements in Harare’s infrastructure and service delivery, setting new standards for urban management in the capital.

Source: Sunday Mail