‘Mbudzi Interchange victims compensated’
By Sharon Buwerimwe | NewsDay |
Government says 51 owners of properties which were demolished to make way for the multi-million dollar Mbudzi Interchange in Harare have been compensated.
The Mbudzi Interchange project is expected to ease congestion at the intersection along the busy Harare-Beitbridge Highway.
Addressing the media during a ministerial tour of the Mbudzi Interchange construction site, Transport minister Felix Mhona said government was still negotiating with the remaining five property owners.
Mhona said government would not impose compensation on them.
“We have close to 51 property owners with title deeds, while we had close to 135 people who had settled here through the Harare City Council. The rest had settled illegally.
“So as we speak, out of 51 property owners, we are only left with five who we are engaging closely with. We have already agreed on the compensation framework. The funding has been availed. I’m sure by the end of next week or so, we would have engaged those remaining property owners so that we can demolish those properties,” Mhona said.
He said the country was negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, but had regained its footing.
“Pre-COVID-19, we had 900 trucks passing through Beitbridge everyday. With the advent of COVID-19, we were down to 300, but as we speak now, we have 800 trucks passing through the post per day for the past four months, which signifies that we are regaining our status. So those who are saying that traffic is being diverted (via Botswana) are lying. It’s not true,” he said.
Mhona also said government was in the process of rehabilitating Chitungwiza Road.