Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere has re-suspended Gweru councillors, with most of them receiving their new suspension letters yesterday afternoon.
by Stephen Chadenga
The councillors were set to resume their duties after Kasukuwere on Monday withdrew his appeal at the Supreme Court in Bulawayo, where he had challenged a ruling by High Court judge, Justice Francis Bere ordering him to reinstate the 11 MDC-T councillors, who include mayor, Hamutendi Kombayi.
The councillors’ lawyer, Reginald Chidawanyika confirmed the new suspensions and said the councillors held a meeting yesterday to discuss the way forward.
“Pursuant to the investigations carried out at Gweru City Council in 2015, I, hereby, suspend you with immediate effect from the office of councillor for (respective ward) of Gweru City Council in terms of section 114(1)(c) of the Urban Councils Act (Chapter 29:15), as amended by section 3 of the Local Government Laws Amendment Act, Number 8 of 2016,” a suspension letter dated November 29 signed by Kasukuwere, read.
“During the period September 26, 2013 to April 22, 2013 you, in common purpose with fellow councillors at Fairmile Hotel and at the mayor’s
parlour, caused council to incur irregular and fruitless expenditure by double expending council funds to
the tune of $6 907,50 on beverages for several meetings held on the same day.”
The councillors are also accused of working in cahoots to pay the MDC-T’s expenses of $1 875 for services provided at Antelope Park, causing council to lose by $1,1 million by irregularly engaging Terror Surveys to undertake a survey of Mkoba 21 stands and irregular trips outside Gweru on non-council business.
The councillors said the letters were delivered by members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police to their homes.
Yesterday, riot police cordoned off Town House, as the three-member commission appointed by Kasukuwere continued with their duties.