TWO NATIONS REPORTER
BEITBRIDGE- Some Beitbridge residents have called for the immediate demolition of Dulibadzimu Stadium in the border town which they say is the cause of flooding because of its location between two adjacent streams.
Piniel Mawadze, a Zanu PF executive told a budget consultative meeting called for political parties by the town council on Tuesday last week that the stadium is low lying and it stops water from flowing whenever there are heavy rains thereby causing floods in the nearby homesteads.
In addition, he said that the stadium which was built during Ian Smith’s regime was too old and does not match international standards hence it must go.
The stadium which was constructed several years ago was built in between streams.
“Where the stadium is situated is disastrous to neighboring houses which are adjacent to it. Whenever we receive more rainfall like what happened recently, the stadium blocks passage of water. Since we are now a Municipality, the standards of our stadium no longer match with that status. The stadium is now old and outdated. It was constructed during a time when the council that was in existence was the Rural District Council,” said Mawadze.
He further suggested that if the local authority could identify another suitable area for the construction of a new stadium.
“ Let the stadium be demolished with immediate effect so that the local authority can immediately take action in constructing another stadium which is attractive and that which matches with developments taking place in the border town like the modernised and upgraded border post. Council could be getting some revenue from the stadium but lives and safety of residents should be prioritised. With its standards, national teams can not use the ground,” he added.
He added that the stadium does not accommodate a lot of people and another stadium which is spacious is required.
Mawadze said an attractive and well constructed stadium will boost the town’s revenue through foreign direct investment.
“Friendly matches between South Africa and Zimbabwe could be necessitated with the proposed developments and that would boost our economy through foreign direct investment,” he said.
Another resident, Lucia Khumalo who is one of the victims of the floods which occurred last week echoed the same sentiments when Two Nations reporter visited her house after the incident.
She said, “If there was no stadium where it is situated, we could not have experienced this because it is blocking passage of water,” she said.
Beitbridge Town Clerk, Loud Ramakgapola told the gathering that he had had a similar proposal before and that they will put it as a proposal in the proposed 2023 budget.
He said he is however, against the demolition of the stadium which is a historical site and said they have plans to attend to the drainage system.
At law, there should be at least 30 metres between a structure and a water body.