Harare mayor Jacob Mafume has said the local government authority issued just 163 stands out of a total of 5 000 initially targeted for allocation to home seekers in 2022 by the local authority.
The authority is sitting on a housing backlog of more than half a million people on its waiting list, ZimLive reported citing Mafume’s end-of-year message delivered on Wednesday.
No land allocations were done in 2021 as the Harare City Council suspended the service in 2020 after most of its top housing officials including a housing director and two acting directors were arrested and charged with corruption. Mafume said:
We continue to perform dismally in the housing sector of the City. Only 163 stands were allocated against a target of 5,000 stands.
We are remodelling the housing delivery strategy so that we work with reputable institutions and developers in the servicing of stands so that we can be able to provide stands with on-site and bulk offsite infrastructure. The current model is not working, and this has created opportunities for land barons to swindle desperate home seekers.
We will in 2023 embark on a programme to ensure that properties get title. In addition to that, we will sell houses to sitting tenants who have occupied the properties for an agreed period.
Harare also built one school in 2022, Budiriro No 7 Primary School taking the total number of schools from 34 to 35. Mafume said the city fathers will also rename its schools and other properties after some luminaries and prominent individuals.
Meanwhile, the mayor said his council is owed $82.7 billion in unpaid rates by both domestic and commercial entities a situation which he says affects the delivery of public goods and services.