Harare, Zimbabwe (News of the South)_Cooperatives will no longer be receiving land from the Harare City Council with residents now required to approach the City of Harare for any acquisitions of land according to an official.
Speaking in Harare during a Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) and Transparency International (TI) event, Mr Michael Chideme said the issue of land barons and corruption has necessitated this radical move which is expected to expedite the acute housing shortage in the capital.
“We are no longer giving land to cooperatives but we are urging for schemes where the funds are no longer being superintended by Chairmans but by the council itself for purposes of transparency”
“Since council is no longer allocating land to cooperatives we urge people not to join any cooperatives but to come to council”, he said.
Mr Chideme said despite this move some cooperatives will continue existing but that dos not mean they are going to get land.
“Its not our duty to ban them or bring them to court but our position is that e are no longer giving land to them”, he added.
Harare currently has more than 500 000 people on its housing waiting list a scenario which has opened room for the flourishing of multiple cooperatives and land barons selling housing stands.
This has resulted in thousands being fleeced of millions of dollars by unscrupulous barons.
However a member of a cooperative lamented the move by council saying it will ultimately hurt ordinary residents.
“How can they just woke up and say we have banned cooperative? How do you ban a legally constituted cooperative, or how do you recompense all the people who have been subscribing their monies for stands?
“Some people in areas such as Saturday Retreat are now being forced to pay to Udcorp or CFI instead of their society bringing about a disaster.
“The question is, will that money be audited as would have happened under the cooperative”, he questioned.
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