TWO NATIONS REPORTER
BEITBRIDGE- Zanu PF Beitbridge Senator, Tambudzani Mohadi has proposed that Municipality of Beitbridge should come up with a supplementary budget to assist some 165 households that were affected by flash floods that hit the border town last week.
Mohadi said this on Tuesday during a budget consultation meeting held for political parties at council chambers.
She said that the supplementary budget should be used to among other things construct two roomed houses for the victims and relocate them to an area which is not prone to floods.
The consultation meeting was attended by councilors, MPs, senators and different political parties’ representatives.
“I am appealing for an emergency supplementary budget to address this perennial disaster. I know people will say it has been happening for years, should we just let it happen continuously as if it is adding any value in the lives of people here in town.
“I visited these people and I was not happy with the situation. They are suffering and all their properties are being destroyed. Even if you give them stands, they cannot construct houses in a day. They can have two roomed houses built for them and then relocated,” she said.
Floods hit Beitbridge on Wednesday evening into Thursday in the border town’s oldest suburb Dulivhadzimu. Some of the victims lost household property, buildings were destroyed and small to medium enterprises operating in the affected areas lost their wares.
Beitbridge Town Clerk, Loud Ramakgapola said council has for the past four years been working on widening and deepening WaMlala River which floods every year.
He said council widened and deepened 900m of the river in 2018 but is facing financial constraints to finish the project.
“Our plan is that we continue widening and deepening WaMlala stream or putting up a drainage on the stream going upwards probably up to Busy Curve but for now we will do as resources allow. We also plan to improve the drainage system around the rank area, we want to put perhaps a drainage from the hospital right down up to the Municipality owned hostels and another one that cuts through to the old rank.
We note of course of concern that about 165 households have been affected but we also appreciate the assistance that we got for example from IOM, we still expect more assistance from other organizations,” he said.
Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) Ward 3 Councillor Takavingei Mahachi said they are appealing to Zimbabwe National Road Authority (Zinara) to release at least 10% of revenue collected from the New Limpopo Bridge for council to embark on projects to assist the victims.
“When Government took over ownership and operations of the New Limpopo Bridge following the expiry of the 20-year-Built Operate and Transfer (BOT) agreement with the New Limpopo Bridge (Ltd) in 2014, the then Transport Minister Obert Mpofu said Zinara was tasked to take over tolling revenue collection
“The revenue realized from the toll fees was to be channeled towards the Beitbridge Bridge Fund (BBF) for use in upgrading the border post and various key infrastructure in the border town. I am appealing that if we could get a certain percent, five or 10 % retention from the Zinara’ collection from the bridge so that it could be channeled towards projects that require to be urgently addressed like assisting flood victims and rehabilitation of roads among others,” said Mahachi.
One of the affected residents, Lucia Khumalo who is Beitbridge Urban Residents Association secretary told Two Nations that she lost property worth thousands of Rands after a vehicle that was swept away by the flash floods destroyed her security wall.
“If there was no stadium nearby, there wouldn’t have been floods occurring around this place. We also appeal that water be contained at the WaMlala stream. If council could also build us houses and relocate us or even allocate us stands so that we slowly build new houses. Whenever it starts raining, we will be in sorrow, fear of our lives and loss of our valued properties and it is really a sad situation,” said Khumalo.