Defaulting Vic Falls residents face water cuts

By Judith Sibanda

Victoria Falls residents who have not paid their water bills for the last three months will have their water supplies cut off, the local authority has announced.

The exercise will start on 20 December.

In a statement, the city mayor Somvelo Dhlamini said the council is owed $500 million by ratepayers.

“The City of Victoria Falls wishes to notify its valuable residents and stakeholders that the water disconnections exercise of 20 December 2021 is a result of a Full Council resolution of 10 November 2021: 55/2021 aimed at recovering debt which is crucial for the delivery of services in the resort city, “the statement read.

“While cognizant of the adverse effects of Covid – 19 to the world and the community of Victoria Falls, in particular, the Local Authority is found between the rock and the hard surface as it is expected to deliver uninterrupted water services against a myriad of production costs.”

Dhlamini said the year 2021 has been a trying year for the authority which at some point had power disconnected from its water production plants due to arrears.

He said despite such challenges, the council remains committed to providing quality services to its residents and stakeholders, but that can be reciprocated by support from its ratepayers.

“Council is owed over ZWL$500million, an amount that can be used in the quest to improve services and ensure residents continue to enjoy quality water services,“

“Council is in agreement that the community of Victoria Falls deserves quality and uninterrupted services and that comes at a cost despite economic challenges which inevitably have a ripple effect on service delivery. Residents and stakeholders are therefore encouraged to settle their bills or approach Council for reasonable payment plans.”

On Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) project, aimed at improving the sewer and water services while aligning the services to the various developments and growth of the city, Dhlamini said preliminary developments have been made after engaging with relevant stakeholders

“On 9 December 2021, Victoria Falls City Council hosted a delegation led by the Minister of Local Government and Public Works  Hon July Moyo and Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution Hon Richard Moyo, who came with a team of Engineers to work with City Engineering department on the possible acceleration of the WASH project and a report has been prepared and submitted to Central Government, which has committed to ensure the swift delivery of water services in Victoria Falls.”

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