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Zinwa sues Gwanda

by Staff reporter
03 May 2021 at 17:18hrs | Views
THE Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) has taken Gwanda Municipality to court for failing to pay a debt of nearly $140 million in unpaid water supplied to the town over a six-year period.

Zinwa, through its lawyers, James, Moyo-Majwabu and Nyoni Legal Practitioners, filed summons at the Bulawayo High Court citing Gwanda Municipality as the defendant.

The water utility seeks an order directing Gwanda Municipality to pay $139 814 990,46 in in unpaid water bill accumulated from April 1, 2015 to February 28, 2021.

Zinwa also wants Gwanda Municipality to pay the money with interest calculated from March 1, 2021 to the date of full payment including legal costs it incurred.

In papers before the court, Zinwa said it sold 9 069 034 cubic metres of bulk water to Gwanda Municipality worth $158 615 341, 74. Gwanda paid part of the money leaving an outstanding balance of $139 814 990,46.

"In accordance thereto, the plaintiff sold water to defendant which was obliged to pay for. In the period extending from April 1, 2015 to February 28, 2021, the plaintiff supplied varying amounts of water totalling 9 069 034 cubic metres to defendant," said Zinwa.

Zinwa said in terms of the agreement entered between the two parties, Gwanda Municipality was supposed to pay the money in full upon receipt of the invoices, failure of which the outstanding amount would attract prescribed interest.

"The defendant failed to pay the whole amount invoiced to it, and as at February 28, 2021, was in arrears in the total sum of $139 814 990, 46. Despite demand, defendant refuses or neglects to tender payment," said Zinwa.

Gwanda Municipality is yet to respond to the lawsuit.

Last week, Gwanda Municipality started disconnecting water supplies to defaulting rate payers as the local authority moves to recover what it is owed by residents and commercial entities.

The local authority is owed $247 million. Of the total, $80 million is owed by residents and the remainder is owed by the commercial sector.

The process of disconnecting water supplies started in Jahunda suburb and last week Phakama residents with high outstanding bills were left stranded without water.

Gwanda Residents Association deputy secretary general Wellington Nare said the local authority should have first notified residents prior to disconnecting water supplies.

Source - zimpapers

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