The Sunday Mail
Sunday Mail Reporter —
Harare City Council is currently not stocking water treatment chemicals but is instead buying them on a daily basis due to lack of funds, despite the hefty salaries paid to council bosses, The Sunday Mail has established.
A council official who preferred anonymity said the daily procurement of water treatment chemicals was likely to lead to a catastrophic situation if the local authority fails to secure the chemicals on any given day.
“The arrangement of buying chemicals daily is simply not proper. This clearly shows lack of proper planning which may result in water production capacity being reduced or the water treatment plant being temporarily closed,” said the official.
“However, council has since entered into an agreement with Zimphos to increase the amount of chemicals supplied on credit.”
Harare needs at least US$3 million per month to buy nine chemicals. In April this year, Harare successfully completed trials for new water treatment chemicals set to reduce costs by US$5 million per annum.
The local authority is currently producing 450 mega litres per day instead of 550 mega litres due to water shortages as well as limited treatment capacity.
The city council stands accused of paying its officials salaries above the stipulated US$6 000 cap at a time when service delivery is suffering.
An audit by the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing recently revealed that over 40 directors and managers were still earning more than US$6 000 per month.
The audit also recommended further investigations to substantiate the extent of prejudice as a result of the high salaries paid to executives.
Harare City Council’s spokesperson Michael Chideme referred all questions to Council’s water and distribution acting director Engineer Hosiah Chisango.
However, Engineer Chisango could not be reached for comment yesterday.