Harare's billing gets $500k boost

HARARE - Harare City Council (HCC) billing system is set to improve following a $500 000 injection by the World Bank (WB).

Council’s billing system has been in shambles with most bills based on estimates, leading to serious defaulting among residents who feel the authority has been short-changing them.

Harare mayor Muchadeyi Masunda said at a council meeting on Thursday water provision is set to improve in Harare after the utilisation of the availed resources.

“The money is meant to bankroll water initiatives to be spearheaded by engineer Christopher Zvobgo and town clerk Tendai Mahachi. The World Bank also availed a water specialist who held a meeting with the two which looked at how we can stretch the little water we have to meet the needs of our residents,” Masunda said.

“The money will among other things be used to improve ICT (Information, Communication and Technology). Our billing system will be improved,” he said.

Many residents in Harare’s various suburbs constantly have to do with erratic water supplies as the city fathers grapple to keep up with demand.

HCC is currently able to produce about 620 mega litres of water but the demand stands at 1 200 mega litres a day.

Also the funds from WB are likely to provide improved information flow between council and its various stakeholders through a functioning website.

Masunda said eight council functionaries, five of which their travel bills will be provided by WB, are set to benefit from skills exchange in South Africa. - Xolisani Ncube and Wendy Muperi

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