Government is still struggling to complete registry offices in Filabusi town, 23 years after the project was approved, forcing villagers to travel to Gwanda to get passports and other important identification documents.
The government approved the building of registry offices in Filabusi town in 1998, but the project is still at a standstill, having been built to window level, with some of the building materials like roofing tiles, planks, window frames and door frames being eaten away by rust and weather conditions.
The project, according to the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (Zimcodd), was a very welcome development to the Insiza community as it was going to bring relief to the community who still suffer from poor service from the current makeshift one-roomed makeshift office.
The plan was to have bigger offices that would better serve the community with all the particulars including passports being issued, the organisation said.
Currently, residents must travel to the Gwanda provincial offices to get passports and other important documents. The project was in line with the devolution agenda which seeks to empower people to have things done at their local level.
“If the project is to continue it would have to start afresh as the current structure is no longer fit to hold the complete structure,” Zimcodd said in a report.
“Thousands of dollars of taxpayers’ money has certainly been lost through this abandoned project. The Insiza CORA (community resource monitoring agents) followed up on the issue with the District Administrator, the Ministry of Public Works and the Registry Provincial Officials but did not yield any feedback as to what stopped the work on the project and whether it would be completed and when,” it said.
“The project if completed would have changed the lives of the people of Insiza for better, as it would have meant that they wouldn’t have to travel all the way to Gwanda for service that they could have got locally, and the staff would have had better working conditions than the current situation where they are cramped up in a very small office space.”
Zimcodd said the whole situation tells a great story of how public resources are being wasted with no consequences and how an opportunity to implement the devolution agenda has been let go by responsible officials.
Source: Centre for Innovation and Technology