Mutare mayor in stand scam

SOME Mutare councillors have drawn daggers against mayor Tatenda Nhamarare, whom they accused of arm-twisting management to allocate himself a residential stand that was earmarked for a church building.

BY KENNETH NYANGANI

The matter was set to be on the agenda of the special full council meeting held in the eastern border city late yesterday.

Some councillors, including those from the MDC-T, are accusing Nhamarare of working against them in their various wards.

A document in possession of NewsDay narrated how Nhamarare acquired the stand.

“In 2015, His Worship the mayor [Tatenda Nhamarare] applied for a low-density stand in Greenside. The site applied for is adjacent to stand number 3393 Mutare township, Greenside. The department of engineering advised the former town clerk [Obert Muzawazi] that the land was not suitable for development because it is excessively wet,’’ the document read.

‘’The mayor was offered a stand in Beira Corridor phase 2 together with other councillors, but he declined the offer as he wanted a piece of land that he could develop immediately.

“It came from the delegation that there was an alternative site adjacent to the churches along Acacia Road that could be considered for a residential stand. The delegation proceeded to view the site where it was agreed by consensus that it was suitable for a residential stand. After the site visit, a report to urban development unit on the sale of the stand being number 11944 Mutare Township, measuring 1 350 square metres, was prepared but not taken through the process.”

However, some councillors maintained that the stand was an institutional stand.

“It’s a church stand that he converted to residential stand, the issue is that he is the leader of the council and he was violating laid down procedures, it was a church stand and there was no change of use,’’ one councillor, who requested anonymity said.

“This has been said in various full council meetings and we are happy that town cleck Joshua Maligwa said that the matter can be discussed at a full council meeting,’’ another councillor said.

However, Nhamarare shot back, claiming he was a beneficiary of Local Government ministry circular that stated that stands should benefit councillors.

He castigated the councillors, saying his almost 1 300 square metres stand cannot be considered an institutional stand.

“I don’t know what’s the issue with these councillors. The issue is that I was allocated a stand after receiving a circular from the ministry that we should get stands as councillors and pay 40%,’’ he said.

“The stand is too small to be an institutional stand. We have councillors who got stands without paying anything, but they went on to sell the stands,’’ he said.

‘’As MDC-T, we have a zero tolerance to corruption. The current audit team at Mutare City Council should audit councillors and myself,’’ he said.

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