Mayor, 5 clrs banned from MDC offices

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INTERNAL fights continue to rock the MDC in Bulawayo with the party yesterday banning mayor Solomon Mguni and five other councillors from accessing its provincial headquarters after they renewed town clerk Christopher Dube’s contract for another five years.

The councillors endorsed Dube’s contract during a general purposes council meeting where they unanimously voted to extend his term by another five years.

The party banned the mayor and councillors Mlandu Ncube of Ward One, Pilate Moyo of Ward 11, Lilian Mlilo of Ward 12, Sikhululekile Moyo of Ward 18, and Earnest Rafamoyo of Ward 20.

MDC provincial spokesperson Swithern Chirowodza confirmed the ban, saying the councillors would only be allowed to access the party’s Getrude Mthombeni House offices when they reverse Dube’s contract renewal.

“The MDC Bulawayo provincial executive dissociates itself from the decision by some councillors to renew Dube’s contract whilst his current contract is still running, without consulting the party.

“MDC councillors were deployed by the party to implement MDC policies… These five councillors and the mayor have shown that they are now in bed with Zanu PF hence they must now stop reporting to us, but to their new found parent.

“Starting with being physically barred from accessing Getrude Mthombeni House, the concerned councillors will face further censure from the party.

“We feel that this decision to extend Dube’s term should have been communicated to the province so that the province can assess whether the town clerk is amenable to the implementation of pro-poor policies which are our stock in trade,” Chirowodza said, adding that the province was going to meet to deliberate on further sanctions to be taken against the councillors.

Chirowodza said the party was against the extension of Dube’s contract by five years because he pushed elitist policies that threaten the MDC vote in the 2023 elections. He accused Dube of forwarding the 2020 budget to the Local Government ministry for approval, which saw rates going up by 716 percent.

The budget was sent for approval despite residents unanimously objecting to the proposed rates which they said were an onslaught on the urban poor. It was subsequently approved with effect from February 1. The rates, Chirowodza said, “threaten our existence as a party.”

“The councillors have been operating on auto-pilot. The whipping comes from the party and as such on major decisions, it is important for councillors to consult,” he said.

Efforts to get a comment from the mayor and the councillors were in vain at the time of going to print.

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