The State of Municipal and Related By-Laws and their Contributions to Urban Resilience in Zimbabwe


  • Kudzai Chatiza
  • Elmond Bandauko


Zimbabwean cities have become vulnerable to climate change impacts. Climate change is impacting city systems and populations. The shocks are contributing to urban poverty. These realities make it critical for urban planning, management and governance instruments to integrate resilience. Given that municipal by-laws are key to urban governance, their effectiveness enables urban resilience. This study analysed the status of municipal by-laws in the context of urban resilience. It used quasi-legal, organisational and socio-economic analyses to establish the political economy of by-law development and enforcement in Zimbabwe. Data were gathered from nine urban councils across the hierarchy of urban centres. The analysis focused on the regulation of basic services (principally water, sanitation and hygiene(WASH) including solid waste) and Local Economic Development (LED). Findings reveal that Zimbabwe‟s councils face serious inadequacies in these service areas, that their by-laws are inadequate and the framework and capacity to address these constraints are limited. The rapid socio-economic changes in urban areas, characterised by informalisation in the context of climate change, limited financial and technical capacity to plan and manage urban services, make this worse.