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MDC reads council members the riot act

Augustine Mukaro

THE opposition Movement for Democratic Change has ordered Harare acting mayor Sekesai Makwavarara and all executive committee chairpersons on the council to resign their

positions by Monday.

The latest development in the Town House saga is likely to raise the political temperature between the MDC and Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo, who wants Makwavarara to continue as acting mayor.

Last month the MDC set up a commission to investigate problems at Town House. Chitungwiza MP Fidelis Mhashu headed the commission.

The party’s leadership has accepted the recommendations of the commission and on Wednesday MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai said Makwavarara and all executive committee chairpersons should quit their posts by December 1 to restore order on the council.

Sources who attended the meeting said the party was prepared to expel the councillors if they refused to comply.

Councillors who have been ordered to relinquish their posts are Falls Nhari (finance), Fani Munengami (environment), Jerome O’Brien (audit), Christopher Mushonga (housing), Wellington Madzivanyika (procurement) and Chipo Suka (licensing).

The sources told the Zimbabwe Independent that Tsvangirai accused Makwavarara of fuelling divisions in the party and questioned her leadership qualities.

“Makwavarara caused divisions in the party by aligning herself more to Chombo than her party,” the source said.

“She is alleged to have gone to the extent of giving Chombo names of councillors whom she felt threatened her position. The councillors were subsequently suspended.”

Sources said the MDC leadership was infuriated by Makwavarara who is accused of allowing embattled town clerk Nomutsa Chideya to literally run the council.

– Meanwhile, Tsvangirai was yesterday quizzed by the police in Kadoma over an attack by unknown assailants on a Zanu PF member during the final campaign for tomorrow’s parliamentary by-election.

Tsvangirai’s spokesman William Bango said the MDC leader was stopped and questioned for almost two hours on his way back to Harare after his roadshow in Kadoma.

This came as MDC spokesperson Paul Themba Nyathi said Zanu PF had set up militia bases near polling stations to intimidate voters.

“The Zanu PF militia have set up bases 150 metres from all polling stations from which they will carry out their intimidatory activities,” Nyathi said.

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