By Albert Nxumalo
BULAWAYO City Council is set to repossess 179 undeveloped residential stands in three townships namely Cowdray Park, Entumbane and Pumula with some having been allocated as far back as 2001, a council report shows.
Council periodically repossesses stands whose beneficiaries would not have developed over a certain period after purchase.
The owners would not only have abandoned their assets but were not paying their obligated rates and rentals.
Prominent personalities ranging from politicians, sportspersons and businessmen have fallen victim to the move.
According to the latest report council said it “should resolve the challenges of double allocations without prejudicing those beneficiaries with a genuine need for shelter.”
The Director of Housing and Community Services Dictor Khumalo reported on June 17, 2020, that Council (4th April 2012) had resolved to rectify the handover of Hlalani Kuhle Project.
He said the council had physically taken over the Hlalani Kuhle on April 16, 2012, with the technical help desk team addressing issues on double allocations.
“The process to handover Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle housing projects was in keeping with the Cabinet decision of May 2009 which had directed that all projects be handed over to local authorities. It had been therefore directed that Council should resolve the challenges of double allocations without prejudicing those beneficiaries with a genuine need for shelter, with the major highlight on re-allocation”.
Council said a total of 179 stands which had been in segment five had been allocated stands during the year 2012.
The stands had been at different levels of development.
The beneficiaries had not complied with Council Resolution and cabinet decision of May 2009 as the stands had remained undeveloped to date, the council said.
After repossession, beneficiaries will be given the first option to re-purchase the stand at a price to be determined by the city valuer.
Council then recommended “That the beneficiaries be given first option to re-purchase the stands at a price recommended by City Valuer and pay an extension fee of RTGS7 000 valid for three months.
“That failure to take up the offer the stands in Cowdray Park be repossessed and used to solve outstanding double allocations and the excess be allocated to deserving beneficiaries in the Council waiting list.
That failure to take up the offers in Entumbane and Pumula Township the stands be allocated to deserving beneficiaries in the Council waiting list.”
However, the council noted that some beneficiaries had paid development fees to the Bulawayo Home Seekers Consortium Trust and Lease fees to Council.
It was suggested that those beneficiaries must obtain a lease agreement and pay for the required lease fees to Council.
Previously, some owners of the land attributed the failure to develop their stands to the economic situation, saying they could not afford it.