Zimbabwe: Warren Hills Cemetery Turned Into Dumpsite

14 January 2021

Warren Hills Cemetery has been turned into an illegal dumpsite by Warren Park D residents as the MDC-run council fails to provide basic service delivery in the area.

A visit to the cemetery yesterday established that the residents now dump their garbage in the cemetery, saying they cannot keep it at home since council was not regularly collecting waste.

Many heaps of garbage couldd be seen in the cemetery.

As if that was not enough, council is struggling to cut the tall grass in the cemetery, a development that leaves people struggling to locate the graves of their deceased relatives.

A resident, Mrs Nyasha Matiza said council had not been collecting garbage on a regular basis since the beginning of lockdown in March last year.

"Council last collected garbage a long time ago, about nine months or so actually, leaving residents with no choice but to dump garbage in the cemetery.

"The problem is that although we pay our rates, the council is failing to provide decent services. They are failing even to cut grass in the cemetery," she said.

Another resident, Mrs Gamuchirai Nyamhuri, said she had no choice but to dump her rubbish in the cemetery.

"I live opposite Warren Hills, so I saw people dumping their garbage in the cemetery and I had no choice but to dump mine there as well because it was accumulating in my backyard. Council has not been collecting garbage in this area for quite some time, so we have no choice," she said.

Council acting spokesperson Mr Innocent Ruwende defended the non-collection of refuse saying: "We have not been able to collect refuse for the past two weeks owing to fuel unavailability.

"As you may be aware, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) garnished our accounts and we only got control yesterday (Tuesday) after it had wiped out the money we owed amounting to $118 million.

"As a result of the garnishing, we could not procure grass cutters. We also have staff shortages as some of our workers are not at work because of Covid-19 pandemic," said Mr Ruwende.

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