AS the country moves to deliver 220 000 houses and flats by 2025, President Mnangagwa is today expected to launch the Zimbabwe National Human Settlements Policy (ZNHSP), which will address the housing and social amenities backlog and redress the issue of illegal settlements.
During the launch of the policy, President Mnangagwa will also commission blocks of flats in Harare’s Marimba suburb as the Second Republic walks the talk on providing modern houses that meet the country’s goal of becoming an upper middle-class economy by 2030.
The launch comes at a time when the opposition, which controls most local authorities has dismally failed on the housing provision front, prompting the central Government to intervene and redress the chaos that was created by successive MDC-led councils.
While urban areas were characterised by the illegal and haphazard parcelling of stands even in wetlands and on road verges, the policy that will be launched today will see the construction of ultra-modern infrastructure that is in sync with the country’s Vision.
As such, regularisation and sanitisation of informal settlements that sprouted under the opposition’s watch will be carried out, not only to clean the opposition mess but also towards building back better.
Thus the policy is tailor-made to address the issue of obsolete and inadequate off-site and on-site infrastructure, the high cost of building materials, and also address the disparities between rural and urban development in line with the President’s mantra that no one should be left behind.
In a statement yesterday, National Housing and Social Amenities Minister Daniel Garwe said the policy proffers alternative housing financing models.
Running under the theme “Towards well-planned and governed sustainable human settlements”, the policy is the cornerstone of the National Development Strategy 1 towards Vision 2030.
“The policy was crafted to create a conducive environment for all stakeholders to participate in human settlements development.
“This approach was taken after noting deficiencies in the National Housing Policy of 2012, Government then embarked on consultations and soliciting of opinions to address these shortcomings inherent in the 2012 policy,” said Minister Garwe.
In the new policy, the Government is taking a deliberate move to ensure sustainable provision of housing and social amenities in both rural and urban settlements, in consultation with relevant stakeholders.
“Adverse effects of climate change are also highlighted in view of the adoption and adaptation of resilient building technologies and inclination towards green energy, with emphasis on the need to protect wetlands,” said the statement.
Throughout the implementation of the policy, the country’s Constitution shall be strictly adhered to with no room for arbitrage.
“Government shall be conscious of the constitutional provision on arbitrary evictions.
“In instances where people have settled on undesignated sites such as road servitudes, wayleaves, land earmarked for social amenities and any other designated use, relocation to appropriate places will be effected,” it added.