LOCAL Government minister Ignatius Chombo has drawn the ire of the MDC-T after he described former Mutare mayor Brian James as racist.
REPORT BY OBEY MANAYITI
Addressing journalists soon after a meeting with Mutare city fathers last week, Chombo said he had fired James because he viewed blacks as “unable to run the city without the assistance of Rhodesians”.
“James, you mean James the whiteman?” said Chombo when asked about why he had fired Brian James.
“He was a disgrace to the City of Mutare. He viewed blacks as people who cannot understand figures. He abused power and he hired Rhodesians to do audits for Mutare City. You don’t fire a person before giving him a chance to respond. There was an investigating team into his conduct and he refused to come. Therefore he chose out and my hands are clean. He is guilty as charged,” said Chombo.
However, the MDC-T said Chombo’s remarks were in bad taste.
“We are so angry about that development and we are still pursuing the legal channels on the matter. We are also taking a political stance too to make sure that Chombo does not take everyone for a ride,” said Manicaland MDC-T provincial chairman Pishai Muchauraya.
“The reasons for firing James boarders on racial grounds and in this case Chombo is trying to protect his corrupt entourage at Mutare City,” added Muchauraya.
James was suspended last year after he was accused of forcing council to hire a South Africa-based consultancy company to audit council books, a decision that was fiercely resisted by fellow MDC-T councillors and senior council officials.
Meanwhile, Chombo has challenged the city fathers to defend their decision to re-engage over 450 contract workers whose contracts were terminated last month as a cost-cutting measure.