Fuel shortages hinder grass mowing

HARARE - The prevailing fuel situation has resulted in more woes, with fears of an increase in rape and muggings due to uncut grass in all areas and mainly on sides of the roads.

Harare City Council (HCC) said yesterday it had not been spared in the fuel crisis and was unable to render some of the critical services to its ratepayers.

With the commencement of the rainy season, grass has grown at a fast rate.

HCC spokesperson Michel Chideme told the Daily News that due to fuel shortages in the country, council was not able to attend to the grass.

“It is because of the fuel shortage, we have not been spared. The grass cutting equipment requires fuel to run; once we get fuel we will deploy our services,” he said.

Motorists have also urged council to consider cutting overgrown grass along the city’s roads, saying this was becoming a threat as their vision was being obscured while driving, thereby causing road accidents.

During last year’s rainy season there were similar complaints with councillors fuming over the city works department’s failure to cut the grass which resulted in muggings, rape cases and road accidents.

Concerns were relayed following reports of a Lochinvar woman who was gang-raped by five men in the tall grass.

Harare Residents Trust (HRT) bemoaned lack of action in the grass-cutting, arguing that more criminal activities will occur if this was not rectified.

Yesterday, Chideme also bemoaned the rampant cultivation activities in undesignated areas during the rainy season; adding that the use of fertilisers by most individuals has resulted in increased contamination of Lake Chivero.

“We discourage people from cultivating in wet lands, river banks and road ridges. We encourage responsible and sustainable cultivation. Also, the use of fertilisers is contributing to the increase of algae in the lack. The fertiliser is washed into the lack when it rains, and this also increases the water treatment bill,” he said.

In the previous weeks the local authority has decried the fuel shortages in the country, noting that the prevailing situation has hindered consistent garbage collection.


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