13 May 2017

Zimbabwe: For Loss of Sleep, 47 Mbare Residents File $100k Lawsuit Against Harare City Council

RESIDENTS from Mbare high density suburb who were affected by flash floods end of last year Thursday filed a $100, 000 law suit against the Harare City Council.

The 47 residents want the municipality to compensate them for "property and food damaged" and "loss of sleep" when their area was flooded due to the construction of Sunshine Bazaar along Simon Mazorodze Road.

According to court papers, the residents are arguing that the building was constructed sometime in 2013 despite their objections and the council went ahead to approve it leading to its opening late 2016.

On the 26th of November last year the areas along Dumbujena, Mbirimi and Chinamhora streets were affected by floods following heavy rains.

"The City Council immediately responded by sending its Engineers who dug the drainage system and an assessment revealed that the original drainage system was tempered with and would not allow water to freely flow as it backwashed into the plaintiff's homes," read the court papers.

"The defendant through its spokesperson also admitted that there was negligence on their part as engineers did not do a proper job and were now trying to do a collective engineering to avoid further floods.

"The Plaintiff thus contends that the defendant was negligent as said by its Chief Engineer Jonathan Mutimukulu that the Defendant did not inspect its clogged pipes caused by construction of the complex and had they noted the faulty in time they would have fixed it before any damage to property had been done."

Also, according to residents, as a result the council's negligence in properly assessing the construction of the said Sunshine Bazaar Mall, they suffered loss and the local authority has an obligation to compensate them.

"Further plaintiff suffered shock, emotional stress and trauma as well as loss of sleep due to floods," the papers say.

The residents are being represented by Allen Moyo.

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