Innocent Ruwende Senior Reporter
Higherlife Foundation is set to plough over US$225 million into Harare’s water and sanitation sectors as part of broader efforts to fight water-borne diseases like cholera and typhoid.
The two partners are working on a Cholera Strategic Plan 2019-2025, which is set to change the way council does its business.
Benchmarking and skills audit are some of the thematic areas set to be introduced in council. Higherlife Foundation is a family foundation founded by Econet founders Strive and Tsitsi Masiyiwa.
As part of the strategy, Harare Mayor Herbert Gomba is supposed to make an announcement to the city that council has adopted a new way of doing business and highlight key areas of focus and implementation.
According to recent minutes of the Joint Education, Health, Housing and Community Services and Licensing Committee and the Human Resources and General Purposes Committee, town clerk Engineer Hosiah Chisango reported that Clr Gomba and his office had engaged Higherlife Foundation for funding.
“Higherlife Foundation had assisted the City of Harare during the peak of the epidemic and the current thrust was to move from crisis management to sustainability,” he said.
“The total cost of the project was US$225 734 725 and this project will be implemented using a phased approach.”
The proposed Cholera Strategic Plan 2019-2025, which was adopted by council on March 18, had four thematic areas namely, reinforcing City of Harare’s management capabilities, operational systems and skills base, strengthening City of Harare’s preparedness and response, upgrading the city’s water and sewer infrastructure in the hotspots and improving the city’s solid waste management.
“The following were the next steps as agreed in the joint review meeting held on March 21, (i) finalisation and subsequent implementation of strategy aimed at eradicating water-borne diseases, (ii) as the city strives to achieve a World Class City status by 2025, there is need to benchmark with other world-class cities in terms of service provision in water, sanitation and hygiene sectors, emergency preparedness and response, project implementation and performance management,” reads the minutes.
The others are to ensure that the structure is lean, dedicated and responsive to the implementation of the strategy and that council acceded to the recommendation to conduct a skills audit. “The skills audit would also assists in identifying the skills gap,” reads the minutes.
“The data collected in the skills audit would be one of the underpinning elements of a personal development plan.”
Council is supposed to implement a values-based transformation and realign structure to strategy, train and develop skills, hire new skills, scrutinise processes and ensure that they assist in strategy execution.