HomePoliticsHarare to unveil $33 trillion budget

Harare to unveil $33 trillion budget

Augustine Mukaro

THE commission running Harare will next week unveil a $33 trillion budget for the year 2006, which will see another steep rise in rates and charges for residents.

Last year council settled for a budget of $1,4 trillion after initially proposing $3 trillion.

The budget, which should have been presented on Wednesday, was postponed to Tuesday after commission chairperson Sekesai Makwavarara failed to turn up for the meeting allegedly due to commitments at the parent ministry.

Highly-placed sources at Town House said the main highlights of the budget revolve around financing the unbundling of city operations into autonomous business units that operate on sustainable basis.

“Capital expenditure has been projected at $13,8 trillion while revenue is around $19,2trillion,” the source said.

The source said Harare would be unbundled into six self-sustaining and profit making business utilities and another six agencies, which are not obliged to be profit-making.

“The utilities will be run as separate companies from council with completely different structures from accounts, human resources and general management,” he said. “The utilities will have to charge viable prices which will allow them to finance their operation and that of the central administration.”

The source said non-profit making entities like the City Health Department and Housing and Community Services would have to be financed from surplus funds generated by the utilities.

He said private refuse collection contractors would be phased out.

“The budget has a huge provision for the procurement of refuse collection trucks.”

Initially Harare’s turnaround plan had envisaged the creation of 12 autonomous business units to run council affairs run along commercial lines.

The plan proposes that the local authority should wholly own the business utilities and where necessary enter joint ventures and smart partnerships, technological transfers and strategic alliances with the private sector.

The business utilities include Harare Corporate, which will be responsible for information technology, procurement, human resources, public relations and the administration. Harare Metro will be in charge of the Harare Metro Police and municipal courts. Harare Water will cater for water and sewerage treatment, managed by an autonomous Harare Water Authority.

Harare Estate will deal with estate development, valuation, housing and council properties. There will also be Harare Infrastructure in charge of roads and lighting while Harare Health will be in charge of primary health delivery.

Harare Environment will take over the general cleaning of the municipal area and refuse collection and disposal.Harare Holdings will be the corporate entity that warehouses council’s businesses such as nurseries, chalets, crusher station and farms. Harare Finance will be in charge of accounting, budgeting and revenue collection.

There will also be Harare Social that deals with social services, recreation and sporting facilities and Harare Emergency, which will shelter the fire brigade and ambulance services.

A new division, Harare Civic, will be introduced to give the city a new dimension in civic participation, consultations, and dialogue to bring residents and council officials closer together.

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