OUTGOING Harare mayor Bernard Manyenyeni has challenged residents to use the upcoming elections to vote for educated councillors with ability to comprehend various issues affecting the capital city, saying the calibre of current city fathers was below par.
BY XOLISANI NCUBE
Giving his last state of the city address on Wednesday, Manyenyeni said the majority of the city’s sitting and aspiring councillors were not inspiring.
“Those seeking mandates from residents must demonstrate their understanding or capacity to understand key issues in council. I had a privilege of sharing insights with prospective councillors across the political divide yesterday (Tuesday). I was not encouraged,” Manyenyeni said.
“They must convince us that they have what it takes to take Harare out of its mess. It is not about just the capacity to secure electoral votes. Being elected does not in itself give one the competence to function effectively as a councillor. Competence comes from a combination of education, training, experience and exposure.”
Manyenyeni has on numerous occasions clashed with fellow councillors and was nearly recalled from the mayor’s post after he criticised them for being shallow.
“We did not always agree nor should we always do, it is in managing our differences, that we have represented our city as he made the tough decisions,” Manyenyeni said at an event that was snubbed by many councillors.
He also had a word for the next mayor: “I am urging political will, political authority and political commitment to be availed, in order to arrest the continued decline of council. Power and will power must converge for the revival of Harare City Council.”