Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere has appointed a four-member commission to run the affairs of Gweru following the suspension of the city’s mayor and all the councillors last week. The commission is led by former Masvingo town clerk Cde Tsungai Mhangami.The names of the other commissioners could not be immediately established last night.
Midlands provincial administrator Ms Cecilia Chitiyo confirmed that Cde Mhangami would chair the commission pending the outcome of a probe into various allegations that are being levelled against mayor Mr Hamutendi Kombayi, his deputy Mr Artwell Manyorauta and all the suspended councillors.
The council was dissolved after 13 MDC-T and three Zanu PF councillors were suspended.
The charges include corruption, gross misconduct, incompetence and mismanagement of council funds and affairs, among others.
“I know Mhangami is the chairperson, but I am still to get the names of the other commissioners,” Ms Chitiyo said.
Council workers’ spokesperson, Mr Cornelius Selipiwe, welcomed Minister Kasukuwere’s intervention.
He said they had waited for a long time for the ouster of the MDC-T led council which he accused of pushing a self-enrichment agenda.
“We welcome the commission led by Mhangami. He will be using the Mayor’s office and we hope they bring sanity to the city,” Mr Selipiwe said.
A Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing audit team investigated allegations against the city fathers a month ago.
The audit results are yet to be made public.
The suspension of the councillors comes weeks after Government fired two MDC-T councillors Albert Chirau (Ward 11) and Moses Marecha (Ward 5) over allegations of abuse of public funds.
One of the suspended councillors Kenneth Sithole (Ward 4) was issued with a final warning.
Suspension letters given to all the councillors said the action was taken in terms of the Urban Councils Act.