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'BCC to avoid milking residents'

by Staff reporter
17 Aug 2019 at 08:13hrs | Views
BULAWAYO Mayor Councillor Solomom Mguni has said for effective service delivery council should embrace international best practices of commercialising some of its entities instead of solely depending on residents' rates payments to fund programmes.

Clr Mguni is in Germany attending a local authority leadership seminar where he said it is prudent for the Bulawayo City Council to devise new revenue streams. His sentiments are in sync with calls from Bulawayo residents who have consistently urged council to come up with alternative ways of generating revenue.

Clr Mguni said his visit has allowed him to tour local authorities in Germany and learn how council can utilise its resources to improve service delivery.

"We have to have other revenue streams. I noticed that in Zimbabwe we depend on milking residents but cities in this part of the world are doing a lot of commercial projects to cushion their residents from high rates," he said.

"So this is an opportunity to share best practices from colleague mayors and city managers from across the world. We have people from Malaysia, Chile, Morocco, Libya, Lebanon among other countries. So there are a lot of people from local authorities who are sharing their experiences through their expertise."

Clr Mguni said he would impart the knowledge he is receiving in the ongoing seminar to the city's councillors as well as management for consideration.

He said unlike in Zimbabwe, service delivery in most European countries is big business for local authorities and BCC can learn from other countries.  

"We are also going to be sharing with those who are at home; councillors, management and staff of the Bulawayo City Council on my journey so that we take note of this new trajectory which progressive citizens and cities have adopted through privatising some service delivery entities.  

"In most European cities they have a water utility. For instance Bulawayo water could be a company in which BCC is a majority shareholder. The company will then declare dividends to the municipality," said Clr Mguni. He said he would also work closely with the Germany Association of Cities for possible twinning arrangements with one of the cities in the European country.

Source - chronicle