By Monica Mutsvangwa
Cabinet received an update on the programme to provide housing and rehabilitate the country’s roads which were damaged by the rains.
Cabinet noted that following a countrywide assessment by joint Ministerial teams, the number of households facing displacement stands at a national total of 21 852.
Harare Metropolitan Province tops the list at 15 713 households, followed by Mashonaland East (1 947), Manicaland (1 683), Mashonaland Central (622), Masvingo (575) Bulawayo (549), Matabeleland South (532), Matabeleland North and Midlands at 105 each, and Mashonaland West (21).
The provision of relief to distressed households, and identification of relocation areas, will continue across all the provinces in order for corrective action to be taken.
The production of appropriate housing plans and architectural designs which promote settlement densification through high-rise structures is a pre-requisite for the provision of housing to families faced with relocation.
In this regard, Cabinet was informed that the plans and designs have now been produced through collaboration between the Ministries of National Housing and Social Amenities; and Local Government and Public Works.
They are mainly the H-type with two and three-bedroomed units, and target low income earners.
Modifications can also be availed for middle income earners.
Building brigades will be revived.
The designs will accommodate public facilities at the ground floor, and include WIFI centres, a community hall with ablutions, an amusement area, a play centre, and a pre-school.
Other amenities will entail shops, a pharmacy, a surgery, and a hair salon.
Liquor outlets and activities that require bulk storage and haulage are excluded.
Resources will be mobilised for the completion of all housing projects.
As the exercise to streamline the operation of cooperatives continued, Cabinet agreed that being a co-operative requires compliance with a legal process.
This will assist in promoting policy consistency at all levels of Government.
On the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme, Cabinet noted that following extensive preparatory work, significant action is now evident on the implementation front.
The respite from the incessant rains has allowed space for attending to the daunting task at hand.
The planning team has now compiled a compendium of all road projects to be implemented by each Road Authority, province by province. Similarly, the selection of roads to be taken over from Local Authorities by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development has started.
The selection of contractors for Harare and other cities and towns has also started.