Gweru City councillors have expressed dismay over a directive by Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo to reinstate dismissed chamber secretary, Richard Masinire, sacked early this year for gross misconduct.
Yesterday, the councillors said the directive was politically-motivated to frustrate the MDC-T-dominated council. Masinire is allegedly aligned to former ruling party Zanu PF.
“What we are saying is that here is a man who was found guilty of gross misconduct, yet the minister (Chombo) orders his reinstatement,” said a councillor who requested anonymity.
Town Clerk Daniel Matawu refused to comment on Chombo’s decision, but confirmed receiving the directive from the Local Government Board in a letter dated August 10.
Matawu said council had raised its reservations to the board and was awaiting its decision.
“Yes, the letter from the board is there, but council also approached it (board) and since the final decision has not yet been reached, we just wait to hear what the board will recommend,” he said.
But sources said Masinire approached Zanu PF ministers close to Chombo to influence the rescission of the decision to fire him.
“He (Masinire) is just playing his cards so that at least he leaves council with something. From the findings of the investigating team where the chamber secretary was found guilty of the three out of four charges leveled against him there is little likelihood he would be reinstated,” said the council source.
Of late, Chombo has come under fire for meddling in the affairs of MDC-T-dominated councils throughout the country.