By Itai Muzondo
Masvingo City councilors have instructed the town Clerk Adolf Gusha to inform all municipal officials to immediately resign from their political offices to avoid losing their jobs.
Debating the issue in the full council meeting recently, all the ten councilors unanimously agreed that there was need to follow the country’s constitution section 266 (3) which states that employees of provincial and metropolitan councils and local authorities must not be office-bearers of any political party.
Ward five councilor Daniel Mberikunashe said it is the town clerk’s mandate to write to all employees that they cannot hold political positions and be council workers at the same time though the right to support a political party of their choice is reserved.
“We urge you to write to all council departments that they cannot hold political positions and be council employees at the same time though we do not necessarily mean that they cannot support their respective political parties,” said Mberikunashe.
Ward seven councilor Richard Musekiwa said councilors came to this decision as they saw the implications of not aligning to the constitution saying they were being given politically biased advice which then affected their operations.
Masvingo Town Clerk Adolf Gusha
“At first we never saw the importance of implementing such constitutional clauses but with the turn of events at Garikai ‘Chitima’ market, the implications have caught up with us. We reluctantly accepted pseudo advice which was influenced by political ambitions,” Musekiwa said.
Gusha neither denied nor accepted the constitutional clause but argued that he could not do the mandated job by councilors as it has not yet been put in an act of law.
“I cannot do that right away as you are basing your argument on the constitution. What you must also think about is that there is no law upon which I can implement that in Zimbabwe. The best I can promise is to give you feedback of how I can handle that after I make legal consultations,” said Gusha.
Councilors however, threatened to bring their own legal expert to clarify the issue if Gusha takes long to solve the problem.
“The only resolution we can come up with on this issue is that we give the Town Clerk time to make his consultations but if he delays, we will bring in our own legal expert to iron out the issue because there is no compromise on issues of the constitution,” said ward 4 councilor Godfrey Kurauone.
Tell Zimbabwe has been informed that the Chief Health Officer at the council Zvapano Munganasa is also the current Zanu PF provincial secretary for health. Munganasa who is in the Mnangagwa camp is also eyeing Gutu East constituency come 2018.
“The major problem is that instead of giving technical advice to councilors especially on the recent flea market problems, Munganasa was giving party factional advice. He was not able to challenge Zanu PF leadership because he is also among them.
“The worst situation is when Munganasa acts as a class monitor in chambers making sure that all councilors from his party will not go against him,” said a source who refused to be named.
MDC-T councilors said even those who were holding positions in their party were supposed to make quick decisions on whether they want jobs or politics. Sources say most top council officials have positions at ward levels.
Meanwhile, the public demands that all civil servants must not hold political posts with the ministry of youth topping the most corrupted sector in Masvingo.
A lot of Zanu PF youth executive members are also doubling as youth officers for example losing candidate for ward nine Biggie Kwangwa is the party’s commissar in the ward and officially works as a youth officer. Other civil servants Mucharevei Chamisa (nurse) who is provincial political commissar and John Chitoro (teacher) who is vice provincial youth chairperson were urged to relinquish their political posts.local