Harare mayor escapes axe

MDC spokesperson Jacob Mafume

HARARE mayor Jacob Mafume got a reprieve after the High Court granted him and other councillors from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) an order barring their recall that could have seen him leave office shortly after assuming the post.


High Court judge Justice Webster Chinamora granted an interim relief by interdicting Local Government minister July Moyo from recalling Mafume and other councillors who contested elections under the MDC Alliance after being seconded from the PDP.

Mafume was facing recall by another faction of the PDP, whose secretary-general is little-known Benjamin Rukanda.

Rukanda, whose recall instructions had already been implemented by Moyo, did not oppose the High Court application or even present himself before the courts.

Mbizo MP Settlement Chikwinya, who appeared in court on behalf of PDP as its secretary-general, said attempts to recall was mere political mischief.

“Pending the confirmation or discharge of this provisional order, the applicants are granted the following interim relief: The first respondent, his agents or subordinates or anyone acting on his behalf or in terms of the letter from second respondent dated September 14, 2020 be and are hereby interdicted from enforcing or taking action in terms of the letter pending the return dates,” part of the interdict read.

Local Government minister and Harare City Council consented to the order, giving Mafume a lifeline.Mafume said the ruling was a vindication that they were facing political persecution.
The judge further saved Bulawayo ward 24 councillor Arnold Batirayi and Mutare ward 12 councillor Simon Chabuka who had already been hit by recalls.