The councilors received the suspension letters last night. In the separate letters dated 21 May, Chombo wrote thus to each of the three: “Following receipts of allegations of abuse of office and council property by yourself, I am in terms ofg section 114 (1) of the Urban Councils Act Chapter 29:15, suspending you as councillor… with immediate effect. I will shortly appoint an investigation team to look into the allegations and advise you accordingly.”
Munyaradzi Mutandavari, the MDC-T Midlands South provincial spokesperson, condemned the development and pointed out that it has ulterior political motives.
“What is disturbing is that these councillors that have been suspended are actually the ones we ranked on top in the council. Chirau was chairperson of finance committee while Marecha led the audit and manpower committee. Sithole was almost an alderman. What it means is that Zanu (PF) simply want those seats and wish to do so by taking advantage of our No Reforms No Elections campaign where we will not participate in future polls,” he said.
The spokesperson added that the development does not also come as a surprise because Zanu (PF) commissar Saviour kasukuwere is on record saying they will target MDC-T councillors.
In the run up to the 2013 elections, Chombo fired several other MDC-T councillors in circumstances that were also condemned by the party as politically motivated. Those controversially fired included former MDC-T Mutare mayor Brian James and former Gwanda mayor Lionel De Necker.
Former Deputy Minister of Local Government and Urban Development Sesel Zvidzai blasted Minister Chombo saying he is a “cruel man” abusing the Urban Council Act by continuing to fire and suspend councilors of the MDC-T at a time when those from Zanu (PF) are actually the real culprits of corruption.Post published in: Africa News