Nyore Madzianike Manicaland Bureau
MUTARE City Council has offered residential stands as grand prizes to be won in a competition aimed at encouraging ratepayers to settle their outstanding bills, as the local authority intensifies revenue collection.
The council will run a competition for 10 months and the grand draw has been slated for Sakubva Stadium where lucky ratepayers, who enter the competition, will walk away with stands and consolation prizes.
Speaking during a full council meeting held at Civic Centre on Tuesday, council public relations officer Mr Spren Mutiwi said the competition was aimed at restoring the paying culture among ratepayers.
“The main purpose of the competition is to restore the culture of paying and targeting account holders who are up-to-date with their accounts,” he said.
“It is also aimed at encouraging those in arrears to pay up. The competition will run for 10 months with complimentary prizes being won in council banking halls. The prizes would be council branded materials.”
Mr Mutiwi said every account holder who pays at least $30 in the banking hall would be eligible to enter the competition and win prizes.
Town Clerk Mr Joshua Maligwa said council was targeting to raise $55 million after spending about $55 000 on the competition. He said their drive was to increase revenue collection within council. “We have about 48 883 property holders in Mutare whom we are saying come and pay,” said Mr Maligwa.
“Out of the 48 883 property holders in Mutare, only 18 000 are in our billing system. If we play our cards very well, we will be the richest council in the country or maybe in the region.”
Mr Maligwa said they were waiting for Government auditors to give them the green light to start the competition.
“The issue is subjected to serious auditing and scrutiny from Government in all the processes,” he said. “Once it has been certified and all irregularities are cleared, we will be then given the green light.
“We are waiting for external auditors.”
Mr Maligwa said council would flight adverts in the Press and on radio, where management, heads of department and councillors will make presentations.