THE opposition MDC-T has come to the defence of its underfire Mutare mayor Tatenda Nhamarare, saying the shady land deals he is alleged to be involved in were part of a Zanu PF smear campaign against the opposition councillor.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
This comes amid a barrage of criticism from MDC-T and Zanu PF councillors, who are accusing the mayor of arm-twisting council management and getting a residential stand on land reportedly earmarked for a church building.
The councillors at a special full council meeting held in the eastern border city recently passed a vote of no confidence against Nhamarare, leaving his fate to be decided by the Local Government ministry.
MDC-T Manicaland provincial chairman David Chimhini told NewsDay yesterday that Nhamarare has since been cleared of any wrong doing.
Chimhini blasted some councillors from his party for working with Zanu PF councillors to tarnish Nhamarare’s image ahead of this year’s general elections.
‘’The issue of councillors fighting the mayor was cleared long back at our caucus meeting. Mayor Tatenda Nhamarare clarified all the issues and as leadership we were satisfied with his clarifications,’’ he said.
‘’The party national secretary for local government, Eddie Cross came to Mutare to verify any allegations against the mayor and even visited the site being referred to and absolved the mayor following a scrutiny of documents relating to the stand allocation.
‘’In short, as a province, we have not been privy to any underhand dealings by the mayor and any allegations by our councillors who are supported by those from Zanu PF councillors and this is a serious mischief and any exercise in futility.’’
“We hope due process will be followed on any allegations raised without rushing to conclusions. Anyone found on the wrong side of the law should face the consequences.’’
Chimhini said his party does not tolerate corruption.
Nhamare has since declared his two residential and commercial stands before daring fellow councillors to publicly declare theirs.