In association with the Service Monitoring and Report Tracking (SMART Harare) initiative I welcome you back to this column. SMART is a site that collects your service delivery reports including concerns where services fail and positive actions when issues are resolved. My role is to monitor the reports you submit and escalate them with your councillor. Our aim is to foster a better relationship between our residents and elected officials.
Collaborations with Partners
SMART Harare has made strides towards improved reporting of service delivery issues and timely responses by the responsible authorities by reaching out to resident groups, associations, ward councillors and City of Harare officials. Through meetings and awareness workshops held with these key stakeholders SMART Harare is well on the way towards completing the loop that makes real-time reporting and efficient feedback a reality. Key partners that have been reached include: Mt Pleasant District Office, Community Water Alliance, Borrowdale Residence and Rate Payers Association, Highlands Neighbourhood Crime Initiative, Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni, Councillor Rusty Markham and Ward 18 residents, Councillor Charity Bango and Ward 41 residents and Zone 6 residents group. Most of these associations and groups have established lively chat groups on WhatsApp and social media platforms to communicate amongst each other and the City of Harare. By capturing the service reports made through these groups, SMART Harare has an added advantage of providing a location reference for each report so it can be viewed on a map, a key component for service engineers to respond to the report. Residents are encouraged to report through https://smartharare.org.
Information and Publicity
Highlands: A resident from Highlands posted on SMART Harare that residents are failing to obtain public information the resident claims the officials are not that willing to make the data readily available when they need it. This is something SMART Harare is motivated to resolve by having open access for all to all reports through the interactive site on www.smartharare.org.
Meanwhile, responding on the issue of data access it was raised by a councillor at a workshop recently, that they were being denied access to public information at district offices. The Mayor of Harare, Bernard Manyenyeni added that people should embrace technology to get the information they need, saying that his office spends 50% of its time on the phone.
The reports below were made via the SMART Harare website. Residents are encouraged to add reports from their neighbourhood to the database.
Hurworth/ Enterprise Roads: The corner of Hurworth Road is quite awful with all sorts of material being dumped there.
Crowhill Road, Paxford Way: “In the past 10 days refuse has been collected along Crowhill Road, Paxford Way and surrounding Roads. let’s hope the collections will continue.”
City Centre: There is rubbish piling up at corner Charter Road and Bank Street, which has gone uncollected for months.
Budiriro: Due to the refuse not being collected illegal dumps are the norm while other residents have resorted to burning their waste, a coping strategy that is putting them at risk from inhalation of toxic fumes.
CoH acting Town Clerk says the city is still battling shortage and constant breakdowns of refuse collection trucks. She says the local authority’s is also in a process of getting 25 half tone trucks from Croco Motors, and that it is their hope that this will ease the situation.
This editorial is paid for by SMART Harare. Log your service delivery issue via https://smartharare.org.