Chinhoyi (New Ziana) –Local business people and companies have been urged to partner the government in building houses to reduce the national housing backlog.
National Housing and Social Amenities Minister Daniel Garwe made the call recently while explaining the National Housing Delivery Programme to Rural District Councils.
Garwe said his ministry was working towards fulfilling its mandate of ensuring the provision of housing for every citizen.
He said it was important to take local investors on board to provide affordable and modern houses.
“Government on its own will not be able to deliver housing for all in terms of providing financial resources. Government has a lot of responsibilities right now because we were being hit by persistent droughts for the past three years and we had Cyclone Idai in Chimanimani and now we are being ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.
“We cannot wait for the government to run the housing programme on its own and the government is inviting every Zimbabwean and those that are not Zimbabwean to come and participate in the development agenda. Let us join hands to develop. We have invited the private sector in the country which is our number one domestic investor,” he added.
Garwe said the government had the land while the companies had the money.
He urged companies, particularly mining companies, to build houses for their employees so that when they retired they would not become destitute.
Garwe applauded the POSB for taking the initiative to build houses in rural areas where most of its clientele was based.
“In Mashonaland West we have Mhangura Mine. Once upon a time Mhangura was a vibrant mine but when it closed people were left with no accommodation, no employment, nothing. We appreciate the business that you are doing and as you do your business of mining and as you provide housing for your employees, consider life after employment. After leaving your employment the person becomes a destitute immediately.
“We want to come up with programmes with yourselves where the Rural District Councils provide affordable land and you come up with resources and build houses for your employees on a rent to buy basis so that when they leave they will have accommodation,” he said.
He noted that the national housing backlog stood at 2 million, with 1.5 million people on active demand after removing double listing.