Harare City Council has engaged the High Court to give them a green light to demolish illegal structures in the city, blaming the mushrooming of such for the deadly Cholera outbreak that has killed more than 49 people.
Mayor Herbert Gomba said his council has made a Court application, as per Constitution to remove illegal structures and deal with the issue of illegal settlements across the city.
He was speaking after accompanying the United State Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Brian Nichols, for a tour of the Cholera-hit Glen View suburb on Wednesday.
“We have always said that there is need to stop illegal settlers in Harare because obviously they will expose our people to diseases and now that we are battling some of the problems, we wouldn’t want to make our people vulnerable to more of those problems coming their way and we are going to, because the new constitution allows us to, make a court application to get a court determination for us to be able to remove those people,” Gomba said.
“That is the route we are taking. We have gone to the High Court, as a requirement of the constitution, and we are going to soon get an order to remove some of the illegal settlers.”
“Again the law again requires that where we can regularise we must be able to regularise and we will be sending our teams to these settlements with an express intention to regularise where possible,” he said.
It was observed that in several suburbs across the city, illegal structures have been erected on residential properties in Mbare, Glen View, Glen Norah and several other suburbs to accommodate more people than can be sustained.
This has led to among other dangers, breakdown in flushing systems, sewage pipe bursts and emergence of waterborne diseases.
Illegal settlements have also emerged in areas council has not put up proper facilities leading to illegal settlers resorting to contaminated sources of water that exposes them to diseases.