Harare residents demand sanity at Town House

There have been reports of widespread corruption at the council.

HARARE residents’ associations yesterday prayed that the a commission of inquiry set up to probe Harare City Council’s operations will take a tough stance against corruption to bring sanity to Town House.

The deadline for written submissions to the commission of inquiry was Wednesday this week.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa last month appointed a commission of inquiry to look into issues of governance at the local authority amid reports of unbridled corruption among council officials and management.

The commission’s mandate dates back to 2017.

Retired judge Justice Maphios Cheda chairs the commission that includes opposition politician Lucia Matibenga, a minister during the inclusive government.

After its appointment, the commission called for written submissions from stakeholders “including but not limited to residents who have insights or information relevant to our mandate.”

Harare Residents Trust director Precious Shumba yesterday said the association submitted its concerns to the commission.

“We have met the deadline as we handed over our written submissions and we are hoping the inquiry will take a hard-line stance on corrupt officials at Harare City Council,” Shumba said.

Combined Harare Residents Association chairperson Reuben Akili said they had also filed their submissions.

“We have also handed our submissions and we are expecting that they will be tough on corrupt officials,” he added.

The commission was mandated to investigate financial management as well as reasons behind the failure to operate an enterprise resource planning system for Harare City Council and quantify any losses suffered as a result.

It was tasked to probe the procedures of management, sell or lease or transfer of the local authority’s properties to private entities and to probe among other procedures compliance with procurement laws.

There have been reports of widespread corruption at the council.

The Auditor-General has in her annual reports flagged mis-governance, financial impropriety as well as corruption by previous councils.

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