A WAR has erupted at Town House where a clique of councilors has reportedly mobilised to oust Harare Mayor Muchadeyi Masunda.
He is being accused of being too elitist and arrogant.
PHILLIP CHIDAVAENZI/MOSES MATENGA
The Harare Residents’ Trust yesterday quoted the council’s chief whip Councillor Victor Chifodya of Glen View Ward 30 as saying Masunda must go for alleged arrogance, but Chifodya denied having said so.
He told NewsDay in an interview that the councillors’ only problem with Masunda was that he was not implementing a council decision to fire town clerk Tendai Mahachi.
The plot to oust Masunda is also allegedly being backed by some officials in the MDC-T who are said to have been irked by the mayor’s reported reluctance to heed Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe’s call for free maternity services at council clinics.
“How can he openly oppose the DPM in public like that?” one of them said. “The mayor must not do that and I am sure that is why the plot to oust him is thickening.”
Ousted MDC-T councillor for Ward 17 in Mt Pleasant Warship Dumba yesterday alleged the scheme was being driven by a powerful figure within council (name supplied) with the backing of some discontented councillors whose past misdeeds were being used by Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo to hold them at ransom.
“Our fear is that there is a hidden hand in this plot where some people are trying to push a Zanu PF agenda. It is surprising that when the resolution to buy a car for the Town Clerk was passed, no one opposed it. Masunda is tough, but he has been slackening here and there. We have reasonable ground to suspect that (the official) is pushing to become mayor,” he said.
Dumba claimed that some councillors were so compromised that they were compelled to back those calling for Masunda’s ouster.
“The minister (Chombo) has a file of misdemeanors committed by councillors so he keeps them on his string so they won’t speak against him. We have heard that this has happened in other municipalities,” he said.
Chifodya said he was only opposed to the manner Masunda was protecting town clerk Tendai Mahachi whose contract expired last month. He said it would be disastrous for the local authority to oust Masunda as he was a powerful figure who had done a lot for the city.
“The mayor does not implement resolutions. He must act on the town clerk, but he is quiet. If we fire the mayor it will be a disaster because he has done a lot (for the city),” he said.
Masunda requested questions in writing, but had not responded by end of day yesterday.