Stray cattle in a central business district (IMAGE: NewsClick)
Kwekwe residents are appealing for stern action from the city council against those that bring donkeys and cattle into residential areas in violation of the local by-laws.
Speaking at a recent Ward 12 residents meeting in Mbizo residential area, some residents said they were not happy with the number of stray livestock in both residential and commercial areas.
“We are seeing a lot of cattle roaming around even in the city centre and they (Kwekwe City Council) said it is illegal it is a crime for your donkeys to be found in the urban area. Back then you would not see donkeys freely moving around the town but now we see a lot of them, like in Mbizo 4 where I reside,” a resident said.
One resident said that he wanted the animals to be rounded up and temporarily kept in pens pending their disposal.
“Back then when the stray livestock was rounded up, they would be driven to the SPCA pens (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). Right now, we do not know if those pens are still being used so that we put the animals there,” the resident said.
One Mbizo resident complained that the stray livestock destroyed their vegetable gardens and posed a danger to motorists.
Responding to the concerns from the residents, Ward 12 councillor Maxwell Washington Moyo said the local authority`s efforts to deal with the problem were being hampered by a shortage of manpower in the municipal police division.
“It is something that takes some time to control mainly because of manpower, that job is done by the central admin and municipal police. When they wanted to deal with the problem, the people who bring livestock into town then started telling each other about it and they disappeared.”
He added: “It is an issue that is being dealt with but presently no one has been caught. Right now, the municipal police have promised that at around 10 am they will be coming here to monitor the situation.”
Moyo said that the livestock pens which had been erected as temporary shelters for stray livestock had been vandalised and there were no places where they could round up the stray livestock into.
He added that the council was considering levying spot fines for those found driving livestock into areas they are not allowed to.