CHIPINGE – Chipinge Town Council has started disconnecting water to residents in a bid to recover RTGS$60m it is owed by residents.
Council chairman Zivanai Nyakuchena said the huge debt has left the local authority with no financial muscle to provide services to the residents. Disconnections started last week.
He urged residents to visit council offices and make payment plans.
The debt stretches from 2013 when Government wrote off water bills owed by residents ahead of the harmonised elections. Since then, residents felt no compulsion to pay their bills regularly, said Nyakuchena.
However, Chipinge Town Residents Community Association chairman Amato Rungano urged council not to disconnect water to residents because of the harsh economic circumstances compounded by the Covid19 lockdown.
Wards 5 and 6 with 2 200 households are the ones that get regular water supplies.
“Ward 5 and 6 receive water supplies every day but they are not paying their bills. Disconnecting water is an exercise to push them to pay. The smooth running of service delivery has been adversely because we also need to raise money to pay Zesa and Zinwa so we can in turn supply water to residents.
“We encourage all ratepayers to approach council for payment plans,” said Nyakuchena.