Kombayi says he has no problem with Kasukuwere


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Movement for Democratic Change Gweru mayor Hamutendi Koimbayi said he had no problem with Local Government Minister Saviour Kasukuwere over his suspension but had issues with the ministry’s permanent secretary George Mlilo and director of human resources Erica Jones whom he accused of misleading Kasukuwere into suspending Gweru city councilors.

Kasukuwere suspended the entire council last week allegedly for gross misconduct, incompetence and mismanagement of council funds and affairs.

MDC-T spokesman, Obert Gutu, said the suspension was unconstitutional and was a way for the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front to decimate MDC-T run councils.

“Section 278 (2) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe makes it abundantly clear that elected councilors can only be dismissed after investigations by an independent tribunal, meaning the Minister no longer has powers to dismiss councilors,” Gutu, a lawyer, said.

“Section 114 of the Urban Councils Act (Chapter 29:15) is ultra vires the provisions of Section 278 (2) of the Constitution and as such, the Minister of Local Government cannot lawfully dismiss and/or suspend any elected local government official from office.

“In fact, the ZANU-PF regime has deliberately failed to harmonise the Urban Councils Act with the provisions of the new Constitution that became operational in May 2013. The ZANU-PF regime has absolutely no respect for both the Constitution and also for the principle of constitutionalism.

“Kasukuwere is clearly suffering from a debilitating deficit of common sense and good governance. It appears that he is unmindful of the fact that the Constitution contains rules, regulations, parameters and guidelines for the Minister that are consistent with the principle of devolution of power to local authorities,” Gutu said.

Kombayi said he had no issues with Kasukuwere, according to The Herald.

“ZANU-PF has nothing to do with my suspension and I have nothing against my newly-appointed Minister Kasukuwere because we never engaged each other on the issues affecting Gweru. The problem that I have is that of the permanent secretary and the head of human resources, Erica Jones, who misinformed the minister to push this agenda so that they appoint heads of departments of their choice at council,” Kombayi said.

 

Full MDC-T statement:

Thursday, 13 August 2015

 Zanu PF unconstitutionally decimates elected Gweru City council    

 

True to his political mandate to decimate the MDC in all urban areas ahead of the watershed 2018 harmonised elections, the newly appointed Local Government Minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, has decimated operations of a whole town by unconstitutionally dismissing two MDC councilors and suspending 13 others in the Midlands City of Gweru.

Section 278 (2) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe makes it abundantly clear that elected councilors can only be dismissed after investigations by an independent tribunal, meaning the Minister no longer has powers to dismiss councillors. Section 114 of the Urban Councils Act (Chapter 29:15) is ultra vires the provisions of Section 278 (2) of the Constitution and as such, the Minister of Local Government cannot lawfully dismiss and/or suspend any elected local government official from office.

In fact, the Zanu PF regime has deliberately failed to harmonise the Urban Councils Act with the provisions of the new Constitution that became operational in May 2013. The Zanu PF regime has absolutely no respect for both the Constitution and also for the principle of constitutionalism.

Kasukuwere is clearly suffering from a debilitating deficit of common sense and good governance. It appears that he is unmindful of the fact that the Constitution contains rules,regulations, parameters and guidelines for the Minister that are consistent with the principle of devolution of power to local authorities.

The Minister of Local Government has therefore conducted himself in a blatantly unconstitutional manner by purporting to dismiss as well as to suspend elected councilors without following the provisions of Section 278 (2) of the Constitution. This is, however, typical of the Zanu PF regime that has literally condemned Zimbabwe into a lawless banana republic. Saviour Kasukuwere has to be brought to order. He cannot continue to act like a mad bull in a china shop.

The MDC will be urgently approaching the courts and in the interim, our elected councilors will simply ignore their purported suspension and thus, remain in office.

As a party, we will not pander to the whims, fantasies and misguided political dictates of an overzealous and thoroughly misguided Zanu PF Minister who is abusing a government portfolio to do party commissariat work and in the process, blatantly violating the Constitution of the country.

The MDC will vigorously pursue all available legal and political options to ensure that the unconstitutional actions of Kasukuwere are promptly reversed.

MDC: EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR ALL

Obert Chaurura Gutu

National Spokesperson

(343 VIEWS)

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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