Making a joyful noise to the Lord in some churches in Bulawayo’s Mpopoma suburb has irked some residents who have raised concern over noise pollution.
The residents told CITE in separate interviews that they have tried several times to engage the local authority on the issue but nothing has materialised.
They added that the churches sometimes hold services over several days and where they would be playing drums and blowing horns and whistles even in the evening.
The churches in the area are St Luke Apostle Church and the Zion Christian Church.
One resident, Raymond Chigwewa, said they have even approached the police but they have not been helpful.
Chigwewa said the reason why there is so much pollution is that there are no buildings at the sites to contain the noise.
“We are not happy with the amount of noise that comes from these churches. We have nothing against people worshipping but the challenge is the noise that we are subjected to. Just last week they had a service from Friday around 9 PM to Sunday around 1 PM,” he said.
“We have engaged the council but they are doing nothing. We tried the police but they told us their hands are tied. It’s practically impossible to sleep in the midst of so much noise. We are tired and we need the council to intervene.”
Another resident, Thulani Ndebele accused the churches of causing grave environmental pollution, citing they have no proper ablution facilities.
“They use Blair toilets or the bush. This whole area is a mess. They have nowhere to properly dispose of their litter and they throw it everywhere leaving the environment very dirty. There are also some ill-built structures which are inhabited by some church members who guard the premises, where do they get water and other services?” he fumed.
The residents also complained about a perennial overflowing sewer which the council has not attended to.
They said once the rainy season starts, the road becomes impassable as the rain water mixes with raw sewer posing as a health hazard to them.
“There is a blocked bridge next to a house at the corner and it’s been blocked for ages. When it rains, you cannot go to the shops or town until the water has subsided and when the sewer bursts raw sewage accumulates at that very corner and you can imagine the stench flies and mosquitoes,” said Moyo.
“When approached the city council says it has no protective clothing this is very unfair to residents in this area. We also pay our rates you know. Our demand is for peaceful nights and a healthy environment.”