There was furore in the council chambers when two councillors nearly exchanged blows following a heated argument on whether council should or not donate towards the President Robert Mugabe birthday bash, during a Finance and General Purposes committee meeting held last Thursday.
Councillor Godfrey Kurauone
Councillor Lovemore Mufamba
On the 19th of January 2015, the then Zanu-PF Masvingo provincial chairperson Ezra Chadzamira wrote a letter to the city council asking for donations towards the 21st February Movement celebrations to be held at the Great Zimbabwe Monuments grounds on the 27th February 2016.
The members of the council’s Finance and General Purposes committee convened to deliberate on the matter. It is during the deliberations that Ward 4 councillor Godfrey Kurauone and Ward 10’s Lovemore Mufamba almost exchanged blows as the former vehemently rejected the latter’s proposal to donate towards the Mugabe birthday bash which is slated for Great Zimbabwe Monuments this Saturday.
Kurauone argued that council cannot sponsor political party activities saying Mugabe’s bash was not a government event but a Zanu-PF gathering.
Kurauone confirmed the development and hastened to say there is no bad blood between him and Mufamba.
“We just wanted to adhere to the council’s protocol. The 21st February Movement celebrations are a Zanu-PF event and as such the council cannot be seen funding the event. The council is only obliged, if need be, to fund national events,” said Kurauone.
“Councillor Mufamba got aggressive since he wanted his motion to sail through but there is no love lost between the two of us,” Kurauone added.
Finance committee chairperson councillor Babylon Beta also confirmed the fracas and said business came to a halt as the two councillors threatened to tear each other apart.
“Members felt that the 21st February Movement celebrations are not a state event and as a result council cannot make any donation towards the function. This did not go down well with some members who felt betrayed since they argued that the bash was a state function and it led to some commotion,” said Beta.
TellZim News established that Mufamba had proposed a $500 cash donation. District councils are said to have pledged $300 each for Mugabe birthday celebrations.
Councillor Mufamba could not be reached for an immediate comment as his mobile kept going unanswered up to the time of going to press.
In related circumstances, in December last year the Masvingo councillors refused to donate towards the Zanu-PF conference in Victoria Falls after Minister of State for Provincial Affairs had written to the council seeking donations.