Chaos as Chitown council bars residents from meeting

1
591

There was commotion during a Chitungwiza Municipality full council meeting yesterday after residents protested a decision by the mayor, Philip Mutoti, to bar them from attending.

by Edgar Gweshe

This was the third time residents have been barred from attending full council meetings.

The Chitungwiza Residents’ Trust (Chitrest) has since raised the issue with MDC-T secretary for local government Eddie Cross, who said the main opposition party, which controls the council, was looking into the matter.

The commotion at the full council meeting started when some residents were told by council police that they had been given a directive to bar them from attending.

Inside the council meeting, Harare Metropolitan Residents’ Forum (HamRef) spokesperson Simbarashe Moyo protested against the move, but was manhandled by a group of councillors who ordered him out.

Journalist Philemon Jambaya sustained minor injuries after he was also manhandled by unidentified officials while rushing out to cover the havoc outside.

Council police officers also threatened and harassed journalists who were taking pictures outside.

The move raised the ire of residents who were waiting outside and a protest ensued.

Council police later on clashed with the residents after they came to disperse the crowd.

The council police officers were assisted by Zanu PF youths who confronted the group of protesters.

A vehicle belonging to Chitrest official Brighton Mazhindu was damaged as the chaos ensued.

The residents fumed that they were not getting feedback from their councillors as to the conduct of council business, hence their decision to come for the council meeting.

They also expressed concern that the councillors were allegedly trying to cover up for their illicit deals by barring them from attending meetings.

Addressing residents after the protest, Moyo said they would soldier on until their demands were met.

“Residents have got a constitutional right to attend full council meetings and contribute to issues affecting service delivery in their area. What the Chitungwiza council is doing is very much unconstitutional, but we are saying that as residents, we will continue to demand our rights.

1 COMMENT

  1. The MD-T councillors in Chitungwiza are just as corrupt and look who help them -zanupf youths so what the hell is happening with these MDC councilors.

Comments are closed.