Government has promised to offer humanitarian assistance to the Harare demolition victims once residents have moved to the proposed site in Highfields according to Local Government and Public Works Minister July Moyo.
The demolitions of structures deemed illegal on 8 December 2020 in Budirio affected one hundred and thirty-four (134) families.
Moyo said, “Given the sensitivity of the demolition, development partners should use the existing structures and work closely with the office of the Minister of State and Devolution for Harare in providing relief to the affected households, in partnering with Development Partners.”
“Humanitarian assistance in the form of tents, food and non-food items will be provided by Government and its partners once residents have moved to the proposed site in Highfields, Harare.”
The Minister, however, indicated that the demolition of houses deemed illegal structures will continue in Harare.
“Enforcement of the law by all local authorities, including Harare City Council, should continue for sanity to prevail,” he said.
“While the demolitions have caused a near humanitarian crisis, the rule of law should always be upheld as most of such illegal settlements are breeding grounds for epidemics and other social vices.”
“The occupations are also championed by individuals who are seeking to profiteer from ordinary peoples’ quest for land and housing. These land barons are causing chaos and frustrating orderly development in Harare.” Went on Moyo.
Moyo agrees that the timing of the demolitions during the rainy season and the on-going COVID 19 pandemic has degenerated into a humanitarian crisis prompting the general public outcry.
“A meeting on the 12th of December 2020 between the Civil Protection Committee members and the affected members reached a deadlock on the proposal by the Government and its partners to relocate the affected families to Zimbabwe grounds in Highfields, where thee are water and sanitation facilities, as a temporary measure,” he said.