Patrick Chitumba, Midlands Bureau Chief
THE Midlands Province has surpassed the 50 000 serviced stands and housing development target for low income earners in line with the objectives of the Zim-Asset infrastructure development cluster.
More than 50 000 homeseekers in the province have been allocated serviced stands and housing projects are at various stages of construction, Midlands Provincial Affairs Minister Jason Machaya has said.
He expressed satisfaction with the progress made so far in housing delivery in the province.
“We have surpassed the 50 000 target and we are grateful to private land developers who have heeded the Government call to provide serviced stands for housing development,” Machaya said.
“Only two weeks ago, Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere commended private land developers and the provincial leadership for their organised planning system that has seen low income earners in the province getting decent housing.”
Prominent housing developers — Mrs Smelly Dube of River Valley Properties, Dr Tinashe Manzungu of Zimbuild Property Investments and Mr Fordson Ndlovu of Fordcon Construction Company, have attributed the success story of housing development in the province to close working relations between private developers, Government and local authorities.
“As private land developers we have been very successful in the provision of stands and houses to the people because we opened our companies to scrutiny by the Government. Our accounts are monitored by a team set in the office of the Provincial Minister of State. That’s why we don’t have cases of abuse of subscription funds by the people,” said Mrs Dube.
Dr Manzungu concurred saying there were no land barons in the Midlands as Government and local authorities were working hand-in-glove.
He said: “As private land developers we have been successful because of transparency. We work with the Government and local authorities from the identification of stands, their servicing and allocation.”
Mr Ndlovu said all projects were done after servicing on approved land.
“It’s more to do with team work and professionalism and we thank the Government for affording us the opportunity to play a part in the provision of housing under the Zim-Asset cluster on infrastructure development,” he said.
Local Government, Public Works and National Housing provincial projects officer Mrs Matilda Manhambo said housing delivery in the Midlands has been successful due to private-public partnerships.
The Government has set a target of 313 000 housing units in its economic blueprint Zim-Asset between 2013 and 2018 and private developers are crucial to its attainment.