The Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has suspended the sale of stands to residents over currency distortions in the country. In December last year, BCC made a decision to sell stands in foreign currency but has now rescinded the decision after an outcry by residents.
In an interview with the Southern Eye, over the weekend, Bulawayo Mayor Councillor Solomon Mguni said:
We are not selling housing stands because of currency distortions. The cost of delivering the stands is way too expensive as contractors servicing stands on our behalf want foreign currency, which we do not have.
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So for now, we have not signed contracts for the servicing of housing stands. We are now engaging residents on the way forward. The thing is that if we charge in foreign currency, we risk creating land barons or having stands being grabbed by those with access to foreign currency for speculative purposes, leaving out genuine residents who are in need of the stands.
We are a pro-poor council and very mindful of those dynamics and those factors that are why we have said for now we would rather not sell any housing stands.