Which government in any in the world unleash debt collector upon its people, it is only an inhuman government or local authority which is cruel, insensitive, and dictatorial” Charged Professor Lovemore Madhuku, while addressing residents at a combined Harare Resident meeting in Harare yesterday evening.
The University of Zimbabwe constitutional lawyer, Lovemore Madhuku described the move by the City of Harare’s seizure of property and disconnections of residents water taps as inhuman and urged residents to resists it using their constitutional rights.
Madhuku who is also the Leader of the political party, The National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) slammed City of Harare debt collection as unconstitutional.
“Who is a debt collector,” quizzed Madhuku, “There is nothing called debt collecting at law, and therefore it cannot be collected by debt collector.”
“Nobody has the right to abuse anyone except God. We are the people who choose those who led us. Nobody who is created by God is above anybody,”
“If you beat them there is no case. He is a not a policeman not a sheriff, make it impossible for debt collector to come and abuse you.
He asked,” Did local government employer a debt collector?”
Madhuku Implored residents to look for the laws that govern them so that they are not trampled upon by the people they elect into office.
“Make your councillors accountable. Demand that they produce results. If the country is going to develop let create this culture questioning our leaders,” said Madhuku.
“We don’t think the use of a debt collector is the best way for us,” concurred Hardlife Mudzingwa of Community Water Alliance.
“The debt question is not new and if we need it to be resolved .We need a debt audit that will establish the nature of the debts. There is need for debt justice that it should be done in the right way and not abuse citizens,” said Mudzingwa.
The city has resorted to seizing residents’ property and disconnecting residents water supplies as a means to force them to pay for the debt the owe. Many residents in Harare are receiving water once in a week or have gone without the essential commodity for several years.
City Engineer Kungadini admitted that the city is not getting adequate water supplies.
Kungadini said water is becoming a rare resource in the capital city, and suburbs have to share the little water resource.
Harare debt stands at $600 million which is owed by companies and the government. Residents are said to owe the city $ 225 million.
According the CoH spokesperson Micheal Chideme there are 80 000 houses that has not come to pay their debt since 2014; “We under took the route to engage debt collectors because the city needed money to render services to the city.”