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Ex MDC-T mayor Chipo Mlotshwa wins Chinhoyi ward

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By Nhau Mangirazi

ALASKA- Former Movement for Democratic Change Mayor Chipo Mlotshwa defeated outgoing mayor and Zanu PF candidate Test Michaels during last month general elections.

Mlotshwa won in Alaska ward 14 situated about 15 kilometres northwest of Chinhoyi.

She is the provincial capital's former mayor from 2012 to 2013 after she lost to Michaels later elected mayor for the town.

Mlotshwa is among opposition women and youths who made it after winning during the recent polls held peacefully.

In last month elections Mlosthwa got 898 votes against Michaels’s 851 while independent candidate Wondeful Makuwerere got 78.

However, residents here yearn for improved sanitation, water and service delivery.

Mlotshwa admitted that there is need to improve service delivery for both women and youths in the outlying mine.

‘Alaska residents face challenges in accessing clean water for better sanitation. It is my hope that things will improve for the better for women and youths around here,’ she said.

‘Women are mostly affected on water and sanitation challenges  where some houses have gone for years without running water,’ added Mlosthwa in an interview.

She added that there must be title deeds so that people own these properties,’ said Mlotshwa.

Among those affected is Ranga Banda whose late father is former underground worker.

He said Chinhoyi municipality must sell remaining houses to tenants occupying the properties.

‘Former mine workers are late and their dependents do not own these properties. We hope incoming councillor will stand for our rights and  themunicipality will give us that offer to buy houses,’ Banda said.

For majority of residents here, the mine, former sports power house in netball, soccer and other disciplines has been neglected for too long.

They want it revived for the better among youths.

‘Sports are part of employment. We hope that things will improve for the better and bring smiles to sports loving citizens here,’ said Martin Rutare, a 35 year old father of two.

He is among the unemployed who witnessed some outstanding players from Alaska here.

Agnes Kabota a local vendor looks forward to see improved road network from Chinhoyi via Alaska to Sheckleton and Lion’s Den.

Another elderly widow Moreen Lunga said incoming councillor must help improvement of market gardening for mostly women to supporting extended families.

‘Majority of elderly women are looking after their married sons and grand-children. Vegetable vending is the only source of income for survival here. We hope as a mother Mlosthwa will help solve our plight here,’ she added.

Mlotshwa admitted that issues of health, water sanitation and housing are affecting communities in the ward and need redress as a matter of urgency 

‘I will push for better conditions for our houses from local authority where policy makers must be focused on residents’ needs,’ she said.

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