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Town clerk challenges dismissal

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Former Chinhoyi town clerk Ezekiel Muringani has appealed against his dismissal describing it as unlawful, unfair and politically-motivated.

In a letter to Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo dated February 20, Muringanis lawyer Takundwa Mudambanuki cited irregularities in the way his clients case was handled.

The letter was copied to acting town clerk Webster Tembo.

Muringani was sacked over charges of misappropriating public funds, submitting false medical aid claims and dereliction of duty.
Mudambanuki confirmed the development yesterday.

My client has mounted a legal challenge against termination of his employment which was not only unlawful, but also unfair in that proper disciplinary actions were not taken prior to his dismissal, said Mudambanuki.

The Local Government Board (LGB) on January 27 adopted a recommendation by a council-appointed probe team to boot out Muringani.

The board presides over the appointments and dismissals of all senior local authorities officials.

Tembo recently told a human resources committee that council did not have jurisdiction to handle Muringanis appeal as the final decision was vested in the LGB.

The 15-member probe team led by lawyer Alec Muchadehama opened investigations into Muringanis conduct in August last year following his suspension by mayor Claudius Nyamhondoro, himself subsequently suspended on July13.

Muringani was charged with falsely claiming over $12 000 for medical assistance when he was on full medical aid.

The dereliction of duty charge stemmed from his alleged failure to supervise former finance director William Mandinde, who was fired last year for defrauding council of $79 629 68.

At the start of the inquiry, Muringani was also facing a charge of collecting and pocketing $4 135 cash from councils main revenue collection point in 2010 without signing for it. The charge was later dropped owing to insufficient evidence.

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