MASVINGO - Tenants of some very old hostels in Mucheke have called upon council to transfer ownership to them, arguing that they have lived there for several years and that the local authority was failing to fully improve them.
Residents who attended a 2020 half year budget review meeting at Mucheke Hall recently said they wished to be granted a chance to apply for the possession of the dilapidated hostels that are commonly known as midhadhadha.
“It has been long since we started renting these flats. Our great grandparents stayed in these premises and here we are now with our families as tenants still. We wish council could give us a chance to apply for ownership,” said one resident.
They also lamented the deterioration of the hostels which they said were now cracked and leaky.
“It is very bad in there. The overcrowding and the noise are suffocating. The hostels have developed cracks and some of the walls are peeling off. During the rainy season, we find it difficult because the roofs are leaky.
“Council must put more money towards maintenance of these flats and finally grant us ownership so we can be safe here,” said another resident.
In response, Masvingo City Council Mayor Collen Maboke said the local authority was in the processes of renovating the hostels. He said it was wise for tenants to wait for completion of the project before they could make their proposals.
“In partnership with a donor organisation called Dialogue on Shelter, we are already in the process of renovating the hostels. The work was interrupted by the national Covid-19 lockdown,” said Maboke.
He said residents’ queries on ownership will be taken into consideration.