Thursday, 28 November 2019


Harare City Council has grounded its refuse collection trucks citing fuel shortages. This means residents will live side-by-side with garbage until council secures the fuel to resume collections. The Herald understands that Clean City, a private firm contracted by council to assist in garbage collection, is also grounded.

Operations at Pomona landfill have also ground to a halt, allegedly due to the fuel shortages.

In a statement, Harare City Council’s acting corporate communications officer Mr Innocent Ruwende said: “The City of Harare wishes to advise its valued residents and stakeholders that since Monday 25 November, refuse collection and Pomona dumpsite operations were brought to a halt due to unavailability of diesel in the country.

“The problem has also affected our partner, Clean City, with whom we are actively working to find a permanent solution.” 

But residents who spoke to The Herald said while fuel has been in short supply in the last few days, the situation did not warrant a suspension of refuse collection.

Mrs Otillia Mabeza said: “Yes, we have challenges regards fuel, but the City of Harare had not been collecting refuse for some time now, especially in Mabvuku, where I leave.

“Already we were worried that cholera might return and strike us as was the situation in the past.”

Another resident, Mr Jeremiah Mariga, said: “The City of Harare is generally incompetent. How do you say we do not have fuel when commuter omnibuses and private vehicles are always on the road?

“I have this stinking feeling that City of Harare wants to attract public sympathy and dodge the blame as they have done in the past, when they said Government was to blame when it is their poor planning and cash flow management.”

This week, the city went dry after Morton Jaffray Water Treatment Plant was shut down all of last weekend for rehabilitation works.

Its closure became prolonged following a Zesa fault, leaving most parts of Harare without water for almost a week, exposing residents to potential health hazards, like typhoid and cholera

As council awaits fuel deliveries, Mr Ruwende has urged ratepayers to separate organic and non-organic refuse at source.

“Bio-degradable waste can be used to make manure and compost for gardening. This will minimise the amount of waste collected,” he said.

It is thought that if City of Harare had sound revenue mechanisms, and used the resources efficiently, fuel challenges would be overcome as council could buy in bulk for its operations. Newsday


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