Gweru proposes to convert mayoral mansion to lodge


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Gweru City Council has proposed to convert the idle mayoral mansion into a state of the art lodge to support its budget, according to  minutes of a recent council meeting.

The mansion has been lying idle since 2004 and councillors felt that the white elephant could generate revenue for the bankrupt council.

In November, the council announced a $49 million budget for this year anchored by a 35 percent increase in tariffs. But the council noted that it had managed to raise $24 million last year against a budget of $33 million as defaults spiked amid a nationwide economic slowdown.

Last month, the council announced that it had been granted rights to extract quarry in a bid to increase revenue and support its road construction projects.

However, councillors and council management disagreed on the way forward for the lodge. Mayor  Hamutendi Kombayi supported the motion while Town Clerk opposed the move.

“I do not think we will be able to manage the facility due to our dwindling finances,” said Town Clerk, Daniel Matawu.

But councillors argued that the project had every chance of success.

“The mansion has been idle and I believe it will help us with accommodation for our visitors and for commercial purposes,” said councillor Albert Chirau.

If the motion sails through,  renovation of the two-storey mansion, located in the leafy suburb of Kopje, will start soon.

Matawu told the meeting that council had submitted the 2015 budget to the local government ministry and was expecting a response soon.- The Source

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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