MIHR has written to Bulawayo City Council for the 3rd time asking the local authority to clarity on the usage of the Bulawayo special water levy funds after the authority officials have given incongruent statements that create a US$1 722 557.68 inconsistency.
MIHR first wrote to the Council on 02 February 2021 asking “Howmuch did the Bulawayo City Council collect as pipeline levy during the USD currency regime period and what were the funds used for?”. The Council responded on the 10th saying the “The pipeline levy collected during dollarization was US$6,911,115.26 i.e. from year 2009 to June 2018 and these were used for the Epping Forest project which is expected to contribute 10ML/ day to the City once finalised.”
MIHR responded on the 11th asking clarity citing that the City’s Engineer Mr Simela Dube was quoted in the CITE story of 19 June 2020 saying the Council paid US$4 013 914 for Epping Forest Lot A and US$1 174 643.58 for Lot B which if added together totals US$5 188 557.58 and thus creates an unaccounted deficit of US$1 722 557.68. On the 16th of February, MIHR wrote another followup letter, but the local authority still did not respond, leading to the 03 March one.
In its latest letter, MIHR is now asking the local authority to also avail proof of payments for the funds.
The $1 water level was a special fund that the Bulawayo City Council collected from residents as part of a fund-raising initiative to facilitate the implementation of the Insiza water pipe duplication. The local authority later shifted the funds to Epping Forest project.