Masunda relents to Chombo order

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Harare Mayor, Muchadeyi Masunda, has relented to Local Government, Rural and Urban Development minister, Ignatius Chombo’s order to fire two MDC-T councillors, Casper Takura and Warship Dumba despite an opposing order from Chombo’s deputy Sessel Zvidzai who had declared Chombo’s order was unprocedural and that the councillors had not been fired.

The move has set the mayor on a collision course with the MDC-T party which has already accused him of being Chombo’s “willing servant”.

Takura and Dumba, were fired by Chombo for alleged corruption but Zvidzai ordered their reinstatement arguing the dismissals were politically-motivated.

The two councillors, who had initially vowed to attend a full council meeting last Thursday did not turn up for the meeting.

Masunda told councillors: “As you know (Minister) Chombo wrote a letter purporting to have fired the two councillors and Zvidzai has written a letter to me and Chombo to reinstate the councillors. We are not going to be caught up in the crossfire but from the Urban Councils Act point of view, the letter written by the minister can only be reversed if at all, by an order of a competent court.”

“The councillors have taken a legal course and until that process is finalised, they will not be able to join us. We are saying as a council let the law take its course and we will deal with it accordingly,” said Masunda.

Dumba and Takura were part of an eight-member team that produced a damning report implicating Chombo and Harare property mogul, Phillip Chiyangwa in shady land deals between 2004 and 2008.