Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Reporter
BINGA Rural District Council has embarked on several capital projects after receiving part of the $26 million under the devolution fund from the Government.
In an interview recently, Binga RDC chief executive officer Mr Joshua Muzamba said they have so far received $6 million from the Government and the money was channelled towards rehabilitating roads at Lusulu Business Centre, water and sewer reticulation at Binga Centre and constructing clinics and classroom blocks in several parts of the district.
“We have to date received $6 million funding from Government under the devolution grants and we are expecting another $20 million for the district. From the $6 million we got, we roofed classroom blocks at 13 schools whose roofs had been blown away by strong winds and we also managed to build a new classroom block at Chibondo in Manjolo ward,” he said.
The council also procured furniture and other consumables for Chipale Clinic in Sinamagonde ward.
“We are also in the process of building two houses for teachers at the same school. We have also built a clinic wing at Malaliya Clinic and erected a perimeter fence and constructed two nurses’ houses. We will do water reticulation and operationalise the clinic in May.”
Mr Muzamba said the devolution funds were also used to improve rural service centres in the district.
“We also did water and sewer reticulation at Binga Centre at Govera high density suburb. We also did road rehabilitation at Lusulu Business Centre including other service centres such as Lusulu, Mlibizi, Siabuwa and Manjolo,” he said.
“We also did road rehabilitation and created a new road network at Lusulu Business Centre,” he said.
Mr Muzamba said the road linking Binga Centre and Siabuwa Road has been rendered inaccessible after Chininga Bridge in Nsungwale area was extensively damaged by floods, which were preceded by heavy rains that lashed the district last month.
“The road is generally not trafficable. We are appealing to the Government to upgrade it because as a local authority we only do feeder roads but for the economic movement of goods and services we will need trunk roads to be established,” he said.
The council set aside a budget of $62 million for 2020, but in terms of developmental projects, the district is lagging behind especially in social infrastructure like schools and clinics. Mr Muzamba said the remaining $20 million under the devolution grant will go towards construction of more schools and clinics.
“We will also do water reticulation for Manjolo because we anticipate it to grow especially when Binga Centre is turned into a local board as we are moving in that direction. So, we have to provide water services for commercial purposes. We are therefore working on ensuring that we have the required infrastructure like water and sewer reticulation,” he said.
“We think in a year or two we should be having Binga Centre turned into a local board on its own. We are hopeful that in the next two years, we should have put up a sound refuse collection system, an adequate water and reticulation system.”
According to the 2012 census, Binga Centre has a population of 10 000 people. The district has a total of 18 health institutions in its 25 wards.
Mr Muzamba also expressed concern over the human-wildlife conflict, which he attributed to the growing populations.
“We are having human settlements encroaching into formerly designated wildlife areas resulting in elephants, hippos and buffaloes straying into the fields of surrounding communities. We also witnessing an increase in attacks by crocodiles especially on the fishermen and we have reaction teams from council assisted by ZimParks and Forestry Commission,” he said. – @mashnets