Rate-owing firms resort to illegal boreholes for water
A NUMBER of institutions owing Masvingo City Council nearly $100 million in rates have resorted to illegal boreholes for water to avoid paying the local authority.
According to a report from the council’s finance department contained in the latest council minutes, council was being owed $99 350 261,52 for the month of April while there has been an increase in the number of illegal boreholes in the city.
“It was highlighted that institutions with boreholes were reluctant to settle their bills since they would rely on borehole water. The committee raised concern on the increasing number of illegal boreholes in the commonage. The committee also raised fears that borehole water would be connected to the municipal water system thereby exposing the whole city to potential contamination,” read the minutes.
Council noted that it has now instructed the Engineering Services department to carry out water quality testing for all private boreholes in the city owned by institutions or individuals with a view to close all illegal boreholes whose water quality would not meet the World Health Organisation Standards (WHO).
Masvingo City Mayor Councilor Collen Maboke during a press briefing after a full council meeting in the city said the local authority had resolved to hand over the institutional debtors to debt collectors.
“Council adopted the finance and general purposes committee report for the month of May 2021. Council resolved to hand over all institutional debtors without valid payment plans to debt collectors.
Council considered a report on high and low-density debtors’ reconciliation covering opening and closing balances, bills raised for the month of May 2021. Council was informed that water disconnections for defaulters were underway in various suburbs,” he said.
Meanwhile, the local authority has accepted a donation of a fire tender by Operation Florian, a company based in the United Kingdom with the city’s fathers required to meet the shipping costs of £10 500.
“Council was being requested to accept the donation either a DAF or Volvo truck and would be required to pay the shipping costs from United Kingdom to Walvis Bay in Namibia.
“Thereafter, council would make arrangements for the transportation of the truck from Walvis Bay to Masvingo.
The committee agreed to accept the donation of a DAF Truck and also agreed to pay for the shipping costs,” read part of the minutes.
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