Walter Mswazie, Masvingo Correspondent
Masvingo City Council is seeking a partner to install 600 solar street lights in the central business district and suburbs to ward off criminals.
Mayor Councillor Hubert Fidze said most street lights in the city were not working and it was expensive to repair them.
“We have resolved to advertise a tender for the installation of 600 solar street lights in the central business district and suburbs. By end of this month, the tender will be out,” said Clr Fidze.
“Our lightning needs attention as most streets lights are no longer working and poor lighting is a cause of grave concern.
“It is also expensive to repair street lights, hence resorting to solar energy but we cannot do it alone. We consider capacity of the contractors, so that we award the tender to the right bidder.
“We are also looking forward to having a robot at corner Robert Mugabe and Simon Mazorodze Street,” he said.
He said council was looking forward to have lighting restored in the city, as it was not safe for the town to remain in darkness.
He said council had a dispute with Zesa over maintenance of street lights and this was making the situation worse.
He said initially it was Zesa’s responsibility to maintain lighting in the city but the company had changed that arrangement.
He said the local authority had contracted another company, Joshua Generation to undertake a $4 million solar street lights project but the contract was terminated due to lack of capacity on the part of the organisation.
Clr Fidze said the youth organisation only managed to install a few solar street lights along Robert Mugabe Street.
The organisation was doing the project at no cost to council.
It had an agreement with the local authority to recoup its expenses through the advertisement on the street lights for ten years.
Cases of muggings, theft and rape have been reported in Masvingo as criminals take advantage of the poor lighting. —@walterbmswazie3.