File picture of Matapi flats after a fire

By Correspondent

The case of Mbare residents who have been staying in a Council bar since 2017 has been received by Parliament and will be dealt with by the relevant Committee.

Parliament of Zimbabwe said it will engage the Portfolio Committee on National Housing and Social Amenities to look into the matter after receiving a petition.

“I’m in receipt of your petition wherein the above refers.

“I write to advise that your petition is admissable and will be referred to the Portfolio Committee on National Housing and Social Amenities,” said Parliament Clerk Kennedy Chokuda.

As reported by this publication here, the victims of the inferno have been living in a disused beer hall, Zororo Bar, for five years, since their flat was destroyed by fire in 2017.

In 2017 Matapi Flats Block 5 Southern was razed down by fire leaving the tenants of fourteen (14) families homeless and exposed to serious health risks.

The disused beer hall, they live in, has only one public toilet which they share with vendors and drunkards.

The situation resulted in a petition being handed over to Parliament as Council has failed to come up with a resolution of the matter.

Unfulfilled Promises

According to the Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) the abject state of the families’ living conditions is a travesty of the Constitution.

“While Section 51 of the Constitution provides for the right to human dignity and privacy, the victims have been living in degrading conditions without access to adequate shelter and exposed to different forms of abuses for a very long time.

“Section 28 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe calls for the state and agencies of government to take legislative and other measures to enable every person to have access to adequate shelter.

“CHRA is calling for urgent humanitarian intervention on the victims of the inferno,” it said.

Mbare residents were promised improved housing and sanitary conditions and infrastructure by VP Constantino Chiwenga in the run-up to the 2018 elections.

Chiwenga shocked many by promising swimming pools for the derelict flats such as Matapi and Shawasha.

However, nothing has been done thus far.

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