The Harare City Council says the government’s failure to disburse ZWL$2.335 billion which was allocated to the local authority in the 2022 National Budget has affected service delivery.
Speaking during a Budget Performance and Service Delivery Review meeting for January to May 2022, Harare City Council Head of Accounts Takatadzeyi Musere said implementation of the city’s projects has stalled due to the central government’s failure to release the funds timeously. Said Musere:
We were allocated ZWL$2,335 billion for devolution funds for the year 2022.
The disbursement that we received up to May is ZWL$73 259 190 and we have utilized the ZWL$73 million.
You can tell that whatever projects that we had put under devolution they’re at a standstill. We are doing nothing.
We don’t have the funding so this has a major impact on service delivery because we thought that the funds from devolution will enable the council to kick start all the activities which needed urgent attention given the setup of our cash flows.
… For the ongoing devolution funds projects, we have the Kuwadzana sewer line replacement, Crowborough (Aerated Lagoon) and Mabvuku Polyclinic admin block.
So that ZWL$73 million which l alluded to, is what it has been utilized.
We are hopeful and appealing as we have been making engagements with our parent ministry in terms of devolution funds disbursement.
Musere said the council is engaging the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works to make sure that the city gets its allocation so that they can continue with the projects.
Meanwhile, by the time the funds will be allocated, they would have lost significant value due to rising inflation.
The inflation rate in Zimbabwe increased to 191.60 per cent in June from 131.70 per cent in May of 2022.