Masvingo province recorded its first COVID 19 positive case today. Today Masvingo province conducted 109 RDT tests. The person tested positive is placed at Rujeko clinic which is the only isolation centre in Masvingo urban. The first case came in a time were scores of people are queing for basic commodities and public transport in Masvingo town. Today a large of people were queing for sugar at PicknPay supermarket. Each person was allowed to buy only 2kg at $67rtgs. Most residents are failing to access basic commodities in residential areas as prices are higher. A 2kg of sugar is costing $100 bond cash and $120 ecocash. Many retailers are prefering forexs than our own currency and this left many citizens failing to access basic commodities. More so residents are also blaming law enforcing agents who maintain order at ques that there are engaging into corruptiion as they enter up purchasing half of the commodities. And this left the majority going home empty handed. As MACRAD we edged the government to provide COVID relief fund to vulnerable families, and people living with disabilities.

Masvingo Centre for Research Advocacy and Development (MACRAD) condemn the move by Masvingo city council to peg prices for residential and commercial stands in foreign currency, in a move allegedly meant to retain the value of land. The new pricing structure is going to be difficult for homes seekers.The Finance and General Purpose Committee in submitting its report during a recent Full Council meeting said there was a need for the local authority to have a fixed price on land which is pegged in USD. The committee proceeded to peg the lowest-priced stand at US$3.50 per square metre to US$19.00 a square metre for commercial stands in the central business district. Officials say fixing the same in a local currency, will result in the Council failing to return capital money which it injected towards installation of roads, water and sewer reticulation. Residents earn their wages in a local currency, the bond, so it is going to be very difficult for them to afford the stands in US$ even though they are pegged at interbank rates. As MACRAD we appeal to Council to continue selling the stands in a currency that the majority can afford. Masvingo City Council has a huge housing backlog with over 12 000 home seekers on the local authority’s waiting list. One of the projects earmarked by the Council is Rujeko D which is supposed to accommodate 700 high-density residential stands.

About MACRAD

Masvingo Centre for Research Advocacy and Development (MACRAD) Trust is an independent Zimbabwean Civil Society institution committed to the development of socio-economic rights and agrarian systems that enhance equitable land rights and sustainable land uses throughout Zimbabwe. MACRAD interacts with various organizations and communities to assist them in developing capacity for policy formulation and research. It also facilitates policy dialogue among communities, governments, academics, civil society and others on land and agrarian development, especially the land rights of marginalized social groups. Masvingo Center for Research Advocacy and Community Development (MACRAD) is driven by a desire to contribute towards improved rural livelihoods that should lead to greater capacities for the rural poor to determine their own destinies and contribute towards national development. MACRAD’s approach entails encouraging continuous policy debates and refinement of policy. This is achieved through generation and provision of research based information, platforms for dialogue, creating and nurturing a policy community in Zimbabwe. The ambition of Masvingo Center for Research Advocacy and Community Development (MACRAD) is to provide leadership in socio-economic justice and land-agrarian policy processes, to become a Centre of Excellence and remain an independent and credible center for knowledge on social and economic justice.

Source: Masvingo Centre for Research Advocacy and Development (MACRAD)