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Council faces $6 700 lawsuit after woman falls into trench

By Sheillah Mapani

A Harare woman is claiming $6 700 damages from Harare City Council after she fell into a trench and broke her ankle.

File picture of Harare Town House
File picture of Harare Town House

Hellen Chivinge approached the Harare Civil Court yesterday accusing council of negligence after workers left an unsecured trench.

The matter was brought before magistrate Mr Brighton Pabwe and was deferred to a later date.

Chivinge told the court that on July 31, 2015, she fell into an open trench dug by council workers while walking along Grosvenor Road in Highlands, Harare.

It is alleged that the trench had been dug by council for Internet cable laying and was not visible in the dark.

The court heard that there were no markings or signs on the road or anywhere near the drain to give notice to road users about the existence of the open trench. As a result, Chivinge fell into the trench and was severely injured.

She was rushed to Mbuya Dorcas Hospital by her husband where it was confirmed that she had sustained a broken ankle.

Chivinge told the court that she had a plaster cast applied on her leg, an X-ray taken and made frequent visits to doctors until her ankle healed.

Further claims are that Chivinge is a director of a swimming pool construction company and also runs a transport business.

She indicated that she could not supervise the businesses due to the injuries she sustained hence the monthly income generated by her company decreased.

As a result, she claims to have lost earnings in the sum of $1 100 incurred medical expenses amounting to $600.

Chivinge also claimed $5 000 as general damages for pain and suffering against the council. Despite her demand, the court heard that the council ignored her claims.The Herald