New Harare Mayor, Lovejoy Chitengu, Backs Chamisa In Acceptance Speech

Newly-elected Harare mayor Ward 36 Councillor Lovejoy Chitengu (CCC) has voiced his support for the party’s leader Nelson Chamisa, in his acceptance speech.

Chitengu’s name was on the list of Sengezo Tshabangu’s 07 November 2023 recall letter to Local Government Minister Winston Chitando.

However, he was spared the axe because the recall letter had an anomaly omitting the letter “n” on his surname.

Cllr Chitengu had 35 votes while Cllr Temany Utete had seven while spoiled votes were three.

Cllr Rosemary Muronda won the deputy mayoral post with 38 votes while her contender Cllr Susan Chuma (proportional representation) had seven.

Below is the new Mayor of Harare’s acceptance speech:

Fellow Councillors, Town Clerk, Harare residents, Ladies and Gentlemen, I have had to think long and hard to find the right words to express both my sadness and relief, that this chamber has taken a most unusual step, to replace two people who we know should be occupying their respective positions as servants of the residents.

It is a sad moment because Cllr Makone, Cllr Kadzombe and the other recalled councillors are such hard workers who have made their mark over the period of their term, cut short by these recalls.

It is sad that this is happening, not because they have done anything wrong but for being precisely the opposite.

The relief we can derive is from the assurances they have given, that they will remain available for consultation on a wide range of decisions that Council must take.

More than that, I look forward to their return to this chamber, either as a result of the court decision or the ballot within the next 90 days.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I ask you to understand that the majority party in this chamber, CCC, which is led by Advocate Nelson Chamisa, weighed the injustice caused by the unnecessary recall of our colleagues, against the loftier goal of serving the residents of this great city.

The party decided to remain consistent with its principle of putting citizens at the centre of all its decisions.

A leadership vacuum in the city would not serve the interests of residents, hence the decision to quickly plug the holes emanating from the unnecessary recalls.

Ladies and Gentleman the decision that you have just taken, so soon after the recall of eight of our colleagues, is in recognition of the fight we face against current challenges, especially that of cholera.

The need for Council to remain focused on its transformative agenda towards a smart city that works for everyone must remain at the forefront of our actions. We must not take this trust for granted as we navigate in these turbulent waters.

I wish to assure our electors and stakeholders that whatever happens to one or any of us, this Council is committed to improving the quality of services rendered to the communities in which we live.

I also wish to assure our electors and stakeholders that, whether it be by decision of the court or the voters in the next 90 days, this chamber waits in anticipation for the return of its recalled colleagues.

In closing, allow me to thank the majority party in the City of Harare, CCC, which is led by Advocate Nelson Chamisa, and you my colleagues for trusting me with the stewardship of this Council in the period ahead.

I thank you.

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