ZINARA dismisses Harare City Council claims
Harare (New Ziana)-The Harare City Council should first account for the funds that it received for road repair and maintenance before it can be allocated some more, the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (ZINARA) has said.
ZINARA said this in response to claims by Harare mayor Jacob Mafume on Tuesday that it was not allocating the local authority adequate funds to maintain city roads.
Mafume said the local authority had been failing to repair and maintain roads since ZINARA took over the function of collecting vehicle licences from local authorities in 2010.
In response, ZINARA said in a statement that it felt duty bound to provide the nation with the correct facts on the issue.
“Whilst we don’t want to respond to rhetoric, we feel duty bound to inform the nation with facts on certain inaccuracies. Firstly, we want to categorically state that, ZINARA has consistently disbursed funds for road rehabilitation and maintenance to all the Road Authorities, City of Harare included,” it said.
“According to the dictates of the Roads Act, a Road Authority can only access a new disbursement from Zinara after acquitting its previous disbursement.”
“As for the City of Harare it is important for the nation to know that in 2020, their total allocation was ZWL86 million which could be translated using the prevailing exchange rate at the time and ZINARA disbursed 100 percent of that amount and the city of Harare failed to acquit their last disbursement.”
ZINARA said as a result, the local authority failed to access an early disbursement in 2021 when its allocation was ZWL1, 3 billion, which again can be translated to USD using the exchange rate at the time.
It said the City of Harare however only requested ZWL154 million of its 2021 allocation and failed to utilise in excess of ZWL1, 1 billion.
The local authority is yet to acquit its fourth quarter disbursement of ZWL566 million despite the fact that most Road Authorities have already acquitted their 2022 disbursements, it said.
“This means that even if funds were to be disbursed today as per the ZINARA schedule for 2023, Harare residents will still be deprived of service delivery until their Road Authority follows the dictates of the Road Act,” it said.
ZINARA urged all road authorities to timeously acquit the released funds in order to access their next allocation.
“It is a fact that our roads need to be rehabilitated and we need to work hand in glove to address this. Whilst some may argue the funds disbursed are not enough to meet all the needs, it will also be noble to be transparent and show the nation how the received funds were utilised,”