New Commissioner for city
EX MASVINGO TOWN CLERK MHANGAMI HEADS COMMISSION RUNNING GWERU
The Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, has appointed a four-member commission to run the affairs of Gweru following the suspension of the city's mayor and all the councillors last week.
The commission is led by former Masvingo town clerk Tsungai Mhangami.
The names of the other commissioners could not be immediately established last night. Midlands Provincial Administrator Cecelia Chitiyo confirmed that Mhangami was going to chair the commission pending the outcome of a probe into various allegations that are being levelled against mayor Hamutendi Kombayi, his deputy Artwell Manyorauta and all the suspended councillors.
13 MDC-T and three Zanu PF councillors were suspended. The charges include corruption, gross misconduct, incompetence and mismanagement of council funds and affairs, among others.
''I know Mhangami is the chairperson, but I'm still to get the names of the other commissioners,'' Chitiyo said.
Council workers' spokesperson, Cornelius Selipiwe, welcomed Kasukuwere's intervention. He said they had waited for a long time for the ouster of the MDC-T led council which he accused of pushing a self-enrichment agenda.
''We welcome the commission led by Mhangami. He'll be using the mayoral office and we hope they bring sanity to the city,'' Selipiwe said.
A Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing audit team investigated allegations against the city fathers a month ago. The audit results are yet to be made public. The suspension of the councillors comes weeks after the government fired two MDC-T councillors Albert Chirau (Ward 11) and Moses Marecha (Ward 5) over allegations of abuse of public funds.
One of the suspended councillors Kenneth Sithole (Ward 4) was issued with a final warning. Suspension letters given to all the councillors said the action was taken in terms of the Urban Councils Act.
''Pursuant to the investigations carried out at Gweru City Council, which revealed your involvement in gross mismanagement, gross misconduct, incompetence in connection with council funds and affairs, I hereby, in terms of Section 114 (1) (c), (d) and (i) (ii) of the Urban Councils Act (Chapter 29:15), hereby, suspend you from being a councillor for Ward (...) of Gweru City Council with immediate effect,'' part of the suspension letter, dated August 12 and signed by Kasukuwere, reads.
''During the period of your suspension, you shall not conduct any council business within or outside council premises and you shall not be eligible to receive any form of remuneration from the Council''- CHRONICLE