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Friday, December 2, 2022
HomeNewsYouths Demand Dialogue Over City Rates Hike

Youths Demand Dialogue Over City Rates Hike

MUTARE– A local youth organization has launched a social accountability project aimed at facilitating dialogue between council and its stakeholders in the face of residential and commercial rates hike.

Conscious Development and Empowerment Trust (CODET) director, Vimbai Betere said the multi-stakeholder campaign will advocate for accountability and transparency from duty bearers.

She accused council of hiding behind Covid-19 regulations to restrict residents input into city administration.

“We are engaging to have parallel budget consultations online using WhatsApp group with at least 240 people per each ward. We have partnered with the business community to push for these conversations and online consultations, targeting all 19 Wards, not the 2 persons per ward consultation done by council.

“We have approached the office of the Deputy Mayor and they have not responded so far,” she said.

The Social Accountability and Justice Campaign, brings together residents, council, civic society and businesses, in the wake of an over 300% rates hikes for both residential and commercial properties of the City.

Council spokesperson Spren Mutiwi was however adamant that the rates hike was justified and necessitated by a rising demand for services in the city.

“There is a mismatch between demand and supply and the new project is upgrading the network from 250mm to 450 mm and that will increase the amount of water

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“This hike which the City says has been necessitated by rising costs of other services has dealt a heavy blow to thousands of struggling families and small businesses in Mutare,” he said.

CODET however says the hike is inconsiderate as the impacts of COVID19 induced national lockdown have been severe on most residents relying on the informal economy and small businesses stopped from operating.

The hike have caused an outcry in the entire city as landlords have replicated council’s action by raising monthly rentals despite salaries for both private and public sectors remaining stagnant, said a statement released by CODET Information desk

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