FOUR Bulawayo aldermen have cautioned the opposition MDC Alliance against monopolising selection of the city’s mayoral candidate, but involve all key stakeholders to ensure the right candidate lands the post.
BY TALENT GUMPO
This came amid reports that the MDC-Alliance-run council had picked Earnest Rafamoyo and Tinashe Kambarami as mayor and deputy mayor, respectively.
Speaking at the burial of the late former deputy mayor Alderman Alexius Sibanda last Thursday, the city’s aldermen said they were disturbed by reports on the on-going selection of the mayor and his deputy.
Israel Mabaleka said: “During my two terms in council, the mayor was selected by all 29 councillors if he was not an executive mayor. We would select possible candidates and vote as the council, and select them there and then. I am surprised that now they are expected to send applications and go for interviews in Harare”.
Elmon Mpofu said the process should be done in the city, especially now that the MDC is preaching devolution of power.
“Being a councillor is like being a headman, it needs someone who knows the people whom they will lead, if the interviews are now done in Harare, we might run a risk of having a mayor who will be clueless about our city,” Mpofu said.
Another alderman, Bathandi Mpofu expressed the same sentiments.
“It is shocking and painful that the mayor will be selected based on interviews that were conducted in another region yet he was selected to be councillor by the residents, that creates suspicion, hence rumours that they want to impose a mayor will be very dangerous, it will revoke anger from the residents and may hinder development in the city,” Mpofu said.
Ngwalo Nyathi said the move and involvement of the party in the selection process was unfortunate.
“That is not the system, the system requires the councillors to sit in the council chambers and choose who they want to lead the city, it must not involve the party.
“The people of Bulawayo are looking forward to being led by people whom they know have the capability of moving the city forward, there is a danger in the system they are using now because the party might end up choosing someone whose roots are not in Bulawayo, we are against the use of party affiliation,” he said.