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Tsvangirai threatens to withdraw councilors

OPPOSITION Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan Tsvangirai has threatened to withdraw all his party’s councillors from Town House in Harare because government has usurped their powers.

In an interview with the Zimbabwe Independent this week, Tsvangirai said there had been a “de facto coup” in Harare and Bulawayo after the appointment of governors for the two cities.

Witness Mangwende was appointed governor for Harare just before the city’s first popularly-elected executive mayor Elias Mudzuri was sacked.

Tsvangirai said his party’s executive would soon meet to decide on a course of action.

“We have been discussing with the MDC Harare province,” said Tsvangirai.

“We have been discussing with the councillors and the provincial executive in Harare. Now the issue has to be taken to the executive for a political discussion on it…which is that if we are not serving any purpose, then the mandate has been pulled from under our feet. We are no longer serving our purpose. We should consider whether we should continue serving in the city council affairs.”

Tsvangirai said Zanu PF had been running the city anyway.

“If people undertake to grab the city without the mandate of the electorate, what is at stake is democracy. What has been sacrificed is the whole democratic legitimacy of whatever Chombo is doing in city council,” he said.

Tsvangirai said Chombo was not willing to hold fresh elections in Harare.

“What we now have in Harare is effectively a commission because councillors who were elected by the people cannot meet and their mayor has been fired,” said Tsvangirai.

l Meanwhile, Mudzuri has not moved out of the mayoral mansion guest-house despite claims by the state media that he had vacated the mansion.

In an interview yesterday, Mudzuri said he was still staying at the mansion and would not go anywhere unless the courts ruled so.

“I am still staying at the mansion and I won’t be going anywhere,” Mudzuri said.

Mudzuri said municipal police have already started harassing his workers demanding the keys. – Staff Writer.

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