By Mary Taruvinga - Staff reporter
More than 50 paid-up members of the Nyatsime Housing Scheme in Chitungizwa were Wednesday allocated their pieces of land after waiting for seven years to get their stands.
Chairperson of the cooperative, Alice Matambo, expressed relief that the hold-up was now over as the council had commenced allocating stands to the people.
She said council had promised that 22 000 stands would be allocated before the end of the year.
“We bought the stands from the local authority in 2007, but there was a delay in the allocation of the stands.
“Serious negotiations started five years ago because home seekers were desperate. They were asked to top up their subscriptions on numerous occasions with nothing forthcoming for sometime,” said Matambo.
Some of the residents who were interviewed said they had paid cash for the stands in 2007, but were surprised in 2010 when they were told to top up the money.
“In 2010, the council ordered those in the high density scheme to pay $900 while those in medium and low density schemes paid $1 800 and $2 200, respectively.
“We could have finished building our homes long back were it not for the bureaucratic bungling of our city fathers.
“ But I am happy that we have finally managed to acquire our stands this time,” said one of the beneficiaries Loreta Mapuranga.
However, conflict is likely to arise as some of the stands allocated to Nyatsime Housing Scheme members had already been occupied.
The occupants say they had purchased the stands from Chitungwiza City Council and paid for them in full.
Charles Tsuro is one of the individuals affected by the allocation of stands by the council.
“I bought this stand from Chitungwiza city council for Z$800 000 and I have been staying here since November 2013. I need an explanation from them on why they would sell the same stand to another person,” said Tsuro.
One of the council officials who was present at the event advised Tsuro to visit their offices with all his papers so that they could lawfully allocate him another stand.
Chitungwiza housing director Takesure Muronzi could not be reached for a comment. However, Chitungwiza mayor Phillip Mutoti said he would only comment after seeing the report today.
Several Chitungwiza councillors and senior council officials have been implicated in underhand land deals over the past few years, leading to the recent axing of director of housing Jemimah Gumbo, while Zanu PF councillor Fredrick Mabamba has been suspended.
Former town clerk Godfrey Tanyanyiwa was jailed over corruption charges.