By Correspondent

A Belarussian delegation this week toured Harare City Council as they prepare to ship through 131 Fire tenders from the European country.

The vehicles were controversially acquired in a US$55 million deal fronted by Local Government Minister July Moyo.

There were accusations of price inflation and the abuse of devolution funds by Central Government.

The Belarusian delegation was led by Director of the University of Civil Protection, Ministry of Emergency Situations Ivan Palevoda.

It also comprised of Mr Vitali Babich, Mr Mikalai Alesiyuk and Mr Siarhei Shumai.

“Zimbabwe is set to receive more than 131 Fire tenders from the cooperation.

“City of Harare is set to be one of the beneficiaries hence the tour,” council said in a statement.

The deal to acquire fire tenders raised a storm as Moyo abrogated the powers of councils and ordered for fire tenders using devolution funds.

Central Gvt Flexed Muscles

Councils queried the move as Devolution funds should be used by councils in consultation with residents.

However, in a letter to city and town councils from the local government permanent secretary’s office, the Ministry indicated it would go ahead with the decision.

“The funds to procure the equipment will be deducted from the 2022 Devolution allocations and will be done over a period of twelve months starting March 2022.

“The cost of each fire tender is USD464,296.

“It is therefore advisable for local authorities to reprioritise the Devolution funds to accommodate the cost of the fire tenders.”

Moyo was also accused of inflating prices and came under a ZACC investigation.

However, nothing has come out of the investigation.

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