“The only tax that we collect is property tax and what we collect from property tax is not enough for us to revamp the infrastructure. We have other taxes charged on businesses which we do not have access to and if a percentage of that can come to HCC, we can develop our infrastructure,” Chisango said.
Acting chamber secretary Charles Kandemiri said Harare only collected $15 million monthly against $73 million expenditure, of which $45 million of that was for water cleaning chemicals.
“That is a serious mismatch and the budget has not changed. We are still operating on a 2018 budget on 1:1 rate, which means we are collecting 1:1, but spending at 1:20 rate and that does not work,” Kandemiri said.
The council said if the Public Finance Management Act is amended to include devolution financing, it would assist local authorities to pass their budgets on time instead of having to wait for two to three months for the Local Government ministry to approve their budgets.
MPs then asked the mayor to explain the controversy behind the US$144 million Chinese loan.
Gomba said the council only got US$72 million of that $144 million because government owed the Chinese a lot of money. He said during the era of former Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo, who had appointed a commission for Harare, a decision was made that vehicles should be bought using part of the US$72 million loan.
Credit: Source link