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BCC has started writing off rates bills

by Staff reporter
07 Aug 2013 at 04:21hrs | Views
Bulawayo City Council has started complying with the Government's directive to write off bills accumulated by residents in the last four years.

The development comes at a time when the Urban Councils Association of Zimbabwe (UCAZ), which last week vowed to defy the directive, has backed down on its stance.

UCAZ members are urban councils that were run by MDC-T councillors until after the just ended harmonised elections when the party lost its majority in some of the councils.

In an interview yesterday, Bulawayo City Council's senior public relations officer Mrs Nesisa Mpofu said the local authority started cancelling residents' debts over the weekend.

"We have initiated the procedure to comply with the Government's directive to write off bills. So far, we are cancelling solid waste, rent and unit tax, also known as Value Added Tax (Vat)," said Mrs Mpofu.

She said the procedure should begin reflecting on residents' bills next month.

Contacted for comment, UCAZ chairperson Alderman Femias Chakabuda said it was up to individual councils to make their own decisions regarding the issue.

"As an executive, we are not defying the order. Local authorities will make their own decisions as soon as councillors are sworn in and mayors are chosen," said Ald Chakabuda.

The directive is meant to bring relief to millions of Zimbabweans who have been economically disempowered by illegal sanctions imposed by Western countries at the instigation of MDC-T in its bid to force regime change.

The Government has said the directive was irreversible.

Residents have urged the Government to also direct utilities such as Zesa and TelOne to write off debts.

Source - herald