Govt relocates airport settlers

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
Government has relocated more than 1 200 families that had built illegal structures near Harare International Airport and expressed confidence that it will complete the process for the remaining 980 families soon.

This comes as the families have expressed frustration and concern at the pace at which the process is taking place, considering that some of them needed to secure school places for their children.

The families are being relocated to Stoneridge Park in Harare South District.

The settlers had been staying at an open space reserved for the airport’s expansion at the corner of Harare Drive and Joshua Nkomo Express Way.

In an interview yesterday, Harare South Member of the National Assembly Cde Shadreck Mashayamombe said the process had been going on well despite challenges of limited land.

“We have so far relocated about 1 200 families and we are left with 980 families,” he said.

“Government has expressed commitment to relocate everyone in the shortest possible time.

“We are happy with the assurance that we got from the Government and land has since been identified to accommodate the remaining families. No one will fail to get a place to stay.”

Cde Mashayamombe said they wanted everyone relocated as soon as possible.

“We have a water-tight system that will not allow anyone to sneak in people who did not reside at the airport settlement,” he said.

“We sent a team comprising all stakeholders from Government departments, including officials from the party.”

It was a hive of activity at Stoneridge Park when The Herald visted yesterday, with people waiting anxiously to be allocated their new places of residence. Most of them converged at waiting rooms, while officials verified their documents before they were relocated.

The exercise comes after President Mugabe expressed reservation on the Joshua Nkomo Express Way. settlement and directed that they be moved elsewhere.

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