KWEKWE — Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo has ordered the reinstatement of Kwekwe City Council treasurer Albert Zingwe hardly a week after the Local Government Board recommended his axing from the local authority for alleged corruption, theft and insubordination.
In a terse letter, dated August 5, Chombo ordered the immediate reinstatement of the embattled treasurer. In arriving at the decision, Chombo cited powers vested in him in terms of Section 314 of the Urban Council Act.
“I have been advised that Kwekwe City Council suspended and dismissed Albert Zingwe on December 21 and appointed Morris Mutema, the Internal Audit manager to take charge of department on an acting capacity. I also noted that council decision was endorsed by the Local Government Board.
“The appointment of an Internal Auditor to act in that capacity at the same time being the watchdog of the Finance Department may not be in the best interest of good governance, as he is the principal of checks and balances of financial control systems.
“I am therefore compelled to exercise the powers vested in me and direct that the City Treasurer be reinstated with immediate effect, until I conduct an enquiry of the state of affairs at council and that the internal audit manager should return to his substantive post. Council is urged to expeditiously come up with modalities of his come back and resumption of duty,” said Chombo.
On Tuesday mayor Shadreck Tobaiwa wrote to Zingwe advising him of the latest development ahead of a full council meeting expected tomorrow.
Meanwhile, council was yesterday still trying to come to terms with the directive.
But Chombo’s deputy Sesel Zvidzai told NewsDay he was unaware of his boss’ directive filed as X/18/32 dated August 5 and delivered to the local authority by fax.
“Zingwe’s dismissal was approved by the Local Government Board and the minister cannot reverse that. I am not aware of such a directive. I will have to check with the minister tomorrow,” said Zvidzai, who has had an uneasy relationship with Chombo.
Close sources said Chombo was likely to dispatch a commission of inquiry to Town House as early as Monday to probe allegations of corruption against town clerk Emmanuel Musara.