PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has accused Harare’s opposition councillors of being corrupt, at a time his own minister, July Moyo, is being investigated for allegedly forcing council into shadowy deals and unprocedurally purchasing expensive equipment for kickbacks.
Mnangagwa said all opposition councillors, running affairs at Town House needed to be weeded out for residents’ lives to be improved.
His statements, uttered at the national heroes acre during the burial ceremony of late minister of state for Harare province, Oliver Chidawu, come months after Moyo allegedly foced council to agree to a waste-to-energy deal with Geogenix BV.
Moyo is also said to have inflated prices of fire tenders he bought for 89 councils dotted across the country.
“It is most unfortunate that the achievements and legacy of the likes of the late engineer, Chidawu, have been ruined by the current crop of City of Harare Councillors,” Mnangagwa said.
“These opportunists have no affinity to improve the quality of life of our people and instead continue to abuse their public positions for personal expediency. This trend should not be allowed into the future.
“Residents in our urban areas must take back their power by voting for men and women with vision, ingenuity and an unwavering passion to service in public office. The current rot in Harare and other local authorities, under opposition parties, must be brought to an end.”
Mnangagwa’s administration and the Harare City Council have been at loggerheads since the early 2000s when control was lost to opposition MDC.
Subsequent councils have blamed it for either meddling in their affairs or deliberately derailing development and service delivery.
Besides the Pomona waste-to-energy deal, the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) dominated council is currently at loggerheads with Moyo over his decision to purchase fire tenders for them using their devolution funds without their involvement.
Moyo allegedly used US$55 million to purchase fire tenders for 89 local authorities, at a price of US$464 292 each.
A search on the internet indicates the most expensive fire tender in China is currently going for US$100 000.
“The 2023 harmonised general elections present a yawning opportunity for rate payers to correct the misnomer of having rogue and insensitive characters running our urban councils.
“Residents are challenged to end the decadence within our urban local authorities by voting for Zanu PF men and women who are firmly rooted in the people-centred ethos of our colossal mass revolutionary party,” added Mnangagwa.