01 September 2008
The Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA) held a successful Harare Municipal Conference on Friday the 29th of August 2008.

Participants in the conference included City of Harare Mayor, councillors, and technical staff from the city of Harare, Senator Morgan Femai, partners from the civic society and NGO sector as well as the CHRA leadership.

The conference sought to develop a common plan between the residents and the councillors, of addressing service delivery problems in Harare and local Governance related issues.

CHRA Chairperson Mr Simbarashe Moyo welcomed the participants to the
conference. In his speech he expressed the Association’s willingness to
support the council in order to improve service delivery in Harare as well as improve Zimbabwe’s local Governance system.

The Chairperson reasserted CHRA’s position that in essence the Association remains essentially a watchdog against council operations in the fight for improved service delivery; and therefore will not hesitate to speak out when council blunders.

Mayor Masunda reiterated his stance that the council is there to
serve and not to be served! The Mayor expressed his gratitude for the
sterling work being done by CHRA in the areas of capacity building for the council as well as residents.

After the CHRA Chief Executive Officer (CEO)’s presentation and subsequent discussions, the residents and the councillors agreed that the following issues must be addressed urgently;
* Advocacy for Constitutionalisation of local Governance
* Restoration of the executive mayoral powers
* Reclamation of the water supply and sewer reticulation responsibility from ZINWA
* Implementation of effective waste management programs
* Rehabilitation of council recreational and sanitary facilities
* Road maintenance.
* Immediate stop to street vendor harassment by Municipal police
* The need for maximum/broad residents participation in all council
decision making processes
* The need to provide shelter for the survivors of Operation
Murambatsvina and other homeless residents.
* Audit of Council property
* Development and implementation of urban agriculture programs

The conference agreed that CHRA should continue with its capacity building program especially around the following issues;
* Training on Council duties, rights, powers & functions as provided
by the law.
* Residents consultation & community engagement strategies
* Participatory budget formulation processes
* Project planning and management; including monitoring & evaluation
* Fundraising strategies
* Providing information about existing and potential networks and
partnerships which the council and residents can use to address pertinent issues like housing and HIV/AIDS

CHRA remains firmly committed to its stance of ensuring enhanced civic
participation in all local Governance processes. In that regard, the
Association is eager to continue providing such platforms like the Municipal conference, so that the residents and the councillors are able to plan, implement and evaluate joint plans of action aimed at improving local governance and service delivery in particular.

Farai Barnabas Mangodza
Chief Executive Officer
Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA)
145 Robert Mugabe Way
Exploration House, Third Floor Harare

www.chra.co.zw
Landline: 00263- 4- 705114
Contacts: Mobile: 011 563 141, 0912638401, 011862012 or email