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    Friday, 28 October 2016

    Gweru Council connects water to condemned suburb



    ELIZABETH MASHIRI
    MIDLANDS BUREAU

    GWERU – Gweru City Council has in a surprise move connected water to a suburb that the local authority itself and the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) have condemned because the developers did not follow procedure.
    The Town Engineer, Robson Manatsa recently told The Mirror that commissioning River Valley stands would cost rate-payers $5 million as this would mean moving the current dumpsite to a new location because the stands are wrongly located.
    He vowed that the 3 000 stands will not be connected to the city's services until all problems were rectified.
    EMA fined River Valley Properties $7 000 for implementing a prescribed project without an environmental impact assessment.
    However, despite all the concerns and the protests, it seems like the local authority will not be able to stop the commissioning of the stands.
    Woodlands is the only suburb in the country where developers ultimately built a house for the First Family. The developers constructed a Gushungo House which was officially opened by the President in December 2015.
    The Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Saviour Kasukuwere told The Mirror that he was going to investigate allegations that were made against River Valley Properties.
    In the latest move, Manatsa said they have connected the water on humanitarian grounds because a disease outbreak is imminent as some residents have already taken occupancy of the stands.
    He said Gweru City Council is continuing with the assessments of the stands.
    "Council has so far done a preliminary assessment of Woodlands stands and connected water and sewer to the main lines, meaning that we are now giving services to the stand owners.
     "Council is now giving services to Woodlands stands but this does not mean we have commissioned them, we have not yet taken responsibility of Woodlands it's just a connection based on humanitarian grounds because people are now living there.
    "The connection is not a message that everything that was done by the developer is up to our expectations no, council is still to do a detailed assessment where we will go and measure the roads, test water pressure and the sewerage systems.
    "So far we want to avoid potential disease outbreaks since those stands are near a dump site where there is high risk of disease outbreak," said Manatsa.
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