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Clash over meeting venue


The rivalry between two councillors from Ntabazinduna near Bulawayo came to a head last Wednesday when their supporters clashed over the use of a community hall for meetings.

The elected MDC-T Ward 4 councillor Mxolisi Ndlovu and Alexander Mkandla, a special interest councillor who is allegedly aligned to Zanu PF, clashed after discovering they had been both booked to hold their meetings at the same venue and time.

They had apparently both booked to use Ntabazinduna Community Hall.

Police later intervened and ordered Mkandla to address his planned meeting at the venue while Ndlovu was asked to use the venue over the weekend.

Ndlovu’s meeting was supposed to address the appointment of an acting chief for the area to replace Ndebele paramount traditional leader Chief Khayisa Ndiweni who died last year as well as update the ward on the use of constituency development funds.
However, Mkandla’s agenda could not be readily ascertained.

Said Ndlovu: “We also intended to discuss the issue of transport levies for operators working in the area.
“Masakhane, a non-governmental organisation working in the area, wanted to educate people on issues of conflict resolution and development.

“Mkandla booked the same venue at the same time to counter our meeting. We told him that we wanted to have a developmental meeting but he was arrogant and vowed not to move out.”

Ndlovu said there was an exchange of harsh words between the two groups.

“Police intervened to diffuse the quarrel and instructed that Mkandla’s meeting go ahead at the expense of the community members who wanted progress in the community,” said Ndlovu.

But Mkandla countered: “We had applied to hold our meeting two weeks ago and were granted permission by the police.

“Ndlovu came to the venue on Wednesday wanting us to get out of the hall so that they could hold their community meeting.”

Masakhane official Effie Ncube confirmed his organisation was forced to cancel their meeting with residents after they found the venue in use.

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