By Sukuoluhle Ndlovu
Masvingo – Masvingo Rural District Council and Masvingo City Council have signed a Memorandum of Agreement on Victoria Ranch servicing.
Victoria Ranch was developed by land barons who then abandoned the place leaving it with no water since 2012. The MOU outlines how the Masvingo RDC and Masvingo City Council will operate in the development of infrastructure in the area.
The MOU will be an advantage to Victoria Ranch residents to demand and advocate for proper service delivery to their local authority and they will be able to participate in policy planning and budgeting processes.
Infrastructure will be also developed.
“MCC and MRDC shall jointly approve designs for services for Victoria Ranch being water reticulation, sewer reticulation and roads and storm water drainage, and be paid by the Client (Vashandi Housing Cooperative and Victoria Ranch Housing Consortium).MCC shall be over the infrastructure certification and expiry of the maintenance period over 12 months period,” as stated in the MOA.
The issue of water will be addressed as stated in the MOA.
“MCC shall connect water and sewer to individual stands at a cost determined by the council and shall maintain the reticulation for water and sewer so that they directly provide these services to this development in light of the urban incorporation. To facilitate the collection services fees, MCC shall also carry out and roads and storm water drainage maintenance.”
Residents of Victoria Ranch said the MOA is giving them hope as they thought they had been abandoned. The MOA will bring change as the location will be recognised as legal.
“We started staying here in 2012 and since then we have been struggling with service delivery. We hope and pray that the MOA will bring us stability as stated and have better and improved service delivery in the location like any other. We have been facing a lot of challenges and is one of the challenges and we relied on borehole water but then the boreholes failed to meet the growing population. At least conflicts over the ownership has been solved and an agreement has been reached,” said Selina Muridzo.