Cowdray Park residents under the Hlalani Kuhle housing scheme are up in arms with the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) for billing them for sewer services at a time when over 12 000 houses are yet to be connected to the city`s sewer reticulation system.
Ward 28 Councillor Kidwell Mujuru presented the resident`s concerns at the recent full council meeting.
Development at the Hlalani Kuhle housing scheme has been progressing at a snail pace as the cash-strapped local authority struggles to deliver services at the area after being handed the project by the government in March 2012.
Cllr Mujuru said the residents were not happy to be paying for a service they were not receiving.
“Out of a total of 15 000 households, only 2 500 have been connected to sewer. The residents are complaining that the council keeps billing them for sewer yet there is no connection. Only forty percent of the households are connected, leaving the rest of the sixty percent to make use of blair toilets,” said Cllr Mujuru.
“It is not fair for residents to keep paying for services that they do not have. The city council needs to ensure that they avail these services to the people. They have no problem with paying for water because they have access to it, but it is unfair to make them pay for sewer when they are constantly using blair toilets.”
The local authority is currently implementing the Bulawayo Water and Sewerage Services Improvement Project (BWSSIP) funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB).
The project is aimed at improving water supplies and sanitation services in the city.
The projects targeted projects include rehabilitation of the outfall sewer line, repair of all water and sewer service connections, pipe laying and replacement, repair of the reclaimed line and pipes and fittings.