Gweru blames fuel crisis for falling service delivery

Gweru City Council says the countrywide fuel crisis has affected its ability to collect refuse and attend to burst pipes and sewer blockages.

“We have been unable to attend to sewer blockages for the past few days due to the unavailability of diesel,” council spokesperson Manford Gambiza told Southern Eye last week.

“Our fleet for sewer blockages is grounded. Frantic efforts are being made to rectify the situation.”

Gambiza also said council was unable to collect refuse because the three trucks had broken down while new refuse compactors commissioned last week were not yet in service.

Town clerk Elizabeth Gwatipedza said the most affected were the high density suburbs of Mkoba and Mtapa.

Chairperson of the Gweru Residents and Ratepayers Association Cornelia Selipiwe said: “When residents pay their bills they expect services to be rendered. Right now there are illegal dump sites all over the city because council is not collecting refuse. There are also hazardous sewer blockages unattended to for long. These challenges can easily make the city slide into a health crisis where disease outbreaks can catch up with us.”

The city is also facing water shortages, with reports indicating that the main raw water reservoir, Gwenhoro Dam, is left with less than six months supplies.

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