HARARE City Council (HCC)’s housing department is allegedlly backtracking on its undertaking to allocate land to 30 homeseekers despite the latter having already paid for it in the Southerton areas of Bexley and Gilwel, Zim Morning Post can reveal.
The residents, some of who showed payment proofs to this publication, claimed to have made the full asking deposits to their pieces of land last year
According to information available to this publication, the HCC Housing Department has been ordered to temporarily halt all activity until the unprocedural, double and fake residential stand allocations are resolved.
There is increasing uncertainty over how land is allocated in Harare process for one to acquire a stand in Harare, with the local authority accused of issuing offer letters without stamps, making it easy for officials to duplicate documents, leading to double allocations in certain instances.
In a statement issued recently, HCC said the move to temporarily shut down the land allocations unit was came about after desperate homeseekers complained that were duped of their hard-earned cash.
Council spokespersonMichael Chideme said the allocations unit would remain closed until investigations were completed.
“Harare City Council is encouraging residents who feel they were short-changed in the allocation of residential stands through our Housing Department to report to the Municipal Police Headquarters with evidence or proof of the transactions they did,” he said.
One duped resident, Freeman Mutambara, said it was sad that council continued to parcel out prime land to land barons for a song, who then go on to sell the same stands at a premium.
Another resident, Privilege Musvanhiri, said the housing waiting list was dysfunctional.
“I have been on the housing waiting list for about 10 years and have been to the office inquiring about infill stands in our neighbourhood in Mabelreign and Greencroft.
“Each time you are told there is nothing, but we see new developments taking place there,” he said.
Southerton homeseekers were, however, upbeat.
“We have no case to answer, gentlemen.
“We have our offer letters with original stamps.
“We paid deposit into council accounts, so we just need to be patient. The ball is in HCC’s court,” said the homeseeker who did not want to be named.