Beit­bridge town seeks up­grade to mu­nic­i­pal­ity

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Mashudu Net­sianda Se­nior Reporter

BEIT­BRIDGE Town Coun­cil has ap­plied to the Min­istry of Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment, Pub­lic Works and Na­tional Hous­ing seek­ing an up­grade to mu­nic­i­pal­ity sta­tus.

Town Sec­re­tary Mr Loud Ra­mak­gap­ola said the Min­istry has since ap­pointed a com­mis­sion to hear res­i­dents’ views on the ap­pli­ca­tion and make rec­om­men­da­tions to the Min­is­ter in terms of the Ur­ban Coun­cils Act.

Res­i­dents have been given up to Oc­to­ber 23 to make writ­ten and oral sub­mis­sions to the com­mis­sion, which will be in the bor­der town from Oc­to­ber 24 to 28.

“We have ap­plied to the Min­istry of Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment, Pub­lic Works and Na­tional Hous­ing for a mu­nic­i­pal­ity sta­tus. In fact, there are sev­eral de­ci­sive fac­tors that come into play be­fore a town is up­graded into a mu­nic­i­pal­ity such as in­fras­truc­tural de­vel­op­ment, road net­work, and pop­u­la­tion, the is­sue of se­cu­rity, avail­abil­ity of health and ed­u­ca­tion fa­cil­i­ties and ac­cess to air travel. As a town we some­how think that we meet the cri­te­ria,” said Mr Ra­mak­gap­ola.

He said in the event that the town is up­graded to a mu­nic­i­pal­ity, there would be an im­prove­ment in terms of ser­vice de­liv­ery and the value of prop­er­ties.

“If the town gets mu­nic­i­pal­ity sta­tus, it will grow eco­nom­i­cally and there will be an im­prove­ment in ser­vice de­liv­ery since the bud­get will also be higher and the value of prop­er­ties will also go up and our stan­dards will also be higher,” said Mr Ra­mak­gap­ola.

He said coun­cil in­tends to du­alise ma­jor roads and the lo­cal author­ity has also en­gaged an in­vestor to con­struct a big shop­ping mall.

“We are plan­ning a wa­ter reser­voir and big shop­ping mall in­clud­ing a li­brary and an­other hos­pi­tal as part of our ef­forts to get mu­nic­i­pal sta­tus. We have four sec­ondary schools, six pri­mary schools and the pop­u­la­tion is also grow­ing,” said Mr Ra­mak­gap­ola.

The town has been grow­ing rapidly after it was granted town sta­tus in 2007.

Town coun­cils are headed by town sec­re­taries while mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties are headed by a town clerk. — @mash­nets

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