Mutare City Council normalizes sewer bursts

By Tinashe Muzama

A health hazard is looming in some of Mutare, Zimbabwe’s high-density suburbs with raw sewer flowing, in some cases flowing from houses, with the Mutare City Council (MCC) reposeful in addressing this environmental time bomb. This is an abnormal scenario that has been normalized by the service provider. The MCC has on various occasions been accused of ignoring its duties of addressing sewer bursts which could have a grave impact on the livelihoods of urban residents through outbreaks of water-borne diseases. Residents are furious over the sewer bursts issues. Some of the bursts in Chikanga, Zimta have gone for one week without being addressed thus raising fears that the sewer might contaminate drinking water. According to the Constitution of Zimbabwe, every citizen has the right to access clean, safe, and portable water. Section 77 reads: “And the state must take reasonable legislative and other measures, within the limits of the resources available to it, to achieve the progressive realization of this right”. Residents have been complaining for a while yet no response from the council. The sewer system in ZIMTA high density suburb has been dilapidated for more than a year which therefore poses a risk and traps for children. The municipality does not have a planned routine to maintain the sewer system infrastructure and they only respond to blockage reports due to a shortage of labor and at the same time give excuses that their cars do not have fuel. The sewer system infrastructure is in bad condition.

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