FORTY-SEVEN Mbare families have taken a class action against the Harare City Council and are demanding $100 000 compensation after their properties were damaged by flash floods believed to have been caused by the city’s poor drainage system.
By PAIDAMOYO MUZULU
The residents, through their lawyers Allen Moyo Attorneys, claimed they lost various movable and immovable properties in last year’s flash floods in the populous high-density suburb.
The residents’ class action was filed last week under case number HC4127/17.
Tressie Taruvinga and 46 others accused the city authorities of negligently approving construction of Sunshine Bazaar Mall along Simon Mazorodze Road without conducting a proper environmental impact assessment of the project.
The residents further argue that the construction of the mall congested the drainage system, resulting in the flash floods that destroyed their homes and household goods.
“As a result of the defendant’s negligence in properly assessing the construction of the said Sunshine Bazaar Mall, the plaintiffs suffered loss and defendant has the obligation to compensate for the loss suffered,” the lawyers said.
They added: “Our clients are seeking compensation in the sum of $100 556,70. The money is broken down as $57 556,70 for property and items damaged and swept away while $43 000 as compensation for shock, loss of sleep and alternative accommodation.”
The flash floods affected Mbare residents, particularly those who reside along Dumbutshena, Mwamuka, Mbirimi and Chinamhora streets.
The residents also argued the city, through its chief engineer Jonathan Mutimukulu, the city did not inspect the clogged pipes caused by the construction of the complex and if they had noted the fault in time they would have fixed it.
The city is yet to respond to the summons.