Innocent Ruwende Senior Reporter
Harare City councillors have accused Kuwadzana Member of the House of Assembly Cde Betty Nhambu Kaseke of illegally parcelling out land. They claim Cde Kaseke charges home seekers $30 per head.
However, Cde Kaseke dismissed the allegations as a smear campaign.
“We are busy chasing land barons in my constituency and the councillors who are part of the syndicate are feeling the heat, hence they are engaging in a smear campaign against me. Harare councillors are corrupt.
“They were giving people this land and making them pay $2 500 on the pretext that they would regularise their stay,’’ she said.
Cde Kaseke is alleged to have parcelled out more than 2 000 stands at Harare City Council farms and paddocks in her constituency.
At a recent full council meeting, Kuwadzana councillor and Education, Health, Housing and Community Services and Licensing Committee chairperson Resias Masunda said politicians were using their influence to invade council land meant for other purposes.
“There is a queue at council offices in Mbare but people are paying $30 to Betty Kaseke. There are more than 2 000 people at our paddocks who were settled by the MP,” he said.
Informal Sector chairperson councillor Wilton Njanjazi said some politicians did not understand the role of council.
“We have a Minister (Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere) who is saying no to land invasions at the same time we have an MP who is busy dishing out land in paddocks,” he said.
Glen View councillor Tungamirai Madzokere said it was the city’s responsibility to allocate stands.
Clr Madzokere suggested that council should approach Minister Kasukuwere over the matter.
Mbare councillor Martin Matinyanya urged council to take action before residents start constructing houses on illegal pieces of land.
“Land invasions are as a result of failure by council to give people land. We are moving at a slow pace. We should give people land so that we stop these invasions,” he said.
Environment Management Committee chairperson Clr Herbert Gomba said residents were getting used to law- lessness.
“Zimbabweans are getting used to disobeying the country’s laws. Politicians are abusing their positions to enrich themselves,” he said.
Cde Kaseke said Minister Kasukuwere had ordered the regularisation of the place when he toured the area.
“We are stopping people from invading the land because some were now taking advantage of the situation,” she said.