OUTGOING Harare councillors on Thursday fell over each other to shower praises on mayor Muchadeyi Masunda with others describing him as a “stabiliser” who kept the capital city going despite their costly blunders.
Speaking at a full council meeting to mark the end of their five-year term, the MDC-T councillors admitted that without Masunda’s professionalism in dealing with civic matters, all the 46 councillors could have long been fired in a single swoop due to their bleeps and blunders.
Glen Norah councillor Wellington Chikombo opened the floodgates, describing Masunda as a leader who kept the council stable despite political interference.
Budiriro councillor Panganai Charumbira weighed in saying: “We want to acknowledge the astute leadership you showed to this council. I feel if you were not there, this council would not have finished its term. You had your shortcomings, its normal, you had your blue-eyed boys, which is natural, but you provided astute leadership,” said Charumbira.
Rugare councillor Peter Moyo said: “Even though some have already said that you are like Cremora, I also want to thank you for giving us experience. We misfired on several occasions, but you controlled us. You showed us leadership.
“We thank you for your leadership and I pity those who are coming after us because they might not get the experience that you gave us. We thank the party that recommended you to council. We travelled with you, the donors were with us and gave us more money than government, and we have no salary arrears like other councils. Four thousand people died of cholera before we came into power, but now, even though our water smells, it’s the smell of chemicals and not sewage,” Moyo said.
Meanwhile, Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo has since written to Masunda and his team advising them of the expiry of their term of office. Chombo said from now on, Town Clerk Tendai Mahachi and provincial administrator Alfred Tome would be in charge of all council affairs until the election of a new council.