Monday, March 27, 2023

Suspended Town Clerk hangs on to vehicle

Tinaani Nyabereka

GWERU- City Council has engaged the police for help in recovering a council vehicle which is in possession of the suspended Town Clerk Vakai Douglas Chikwekwe.
The letter was written by acting Town Clerk Samson Sekenhamo after council passed a resolution to have the car returned during a special council meeting was held this week.
The suspended Chikwekwe is in possession of a Nissan Navara Single Cab Registration No AAE 5600.
Chikwekwe arrested on allegations of criminal abuse of office is set to appear court on the March 17, 2023 after being remanded out of custody on ZW$ 100 000 bail.
“Reference is hereby made to the subject; The bearers; Mr. T.D.F Marerwa, Acting Chamber Secretary, Mr. K Mundondo, Transport Manager Mr. M. Mahere, The Acting Chief Security Officer, Mr. A. Matsiwo, Acting Sergeant Mr. B. Mambo, Constable Ms. S. Ncube have been instructed by Gweru City Council to recover the above-mentioned vehicle from the Acting Town Clerk and substantive Chamber Secretary who was suspended from employment on 22nd February 2023,” read part of the letter.
According to the council resolution, Chikwekwe is supposed to return all council property including the vehicle as a matter of urgency as he awaits his trial.
However, Chikwekwe is believed to be refusing to return back the vehicle arguing that, council gave a vehicle to former Engineer Robson Manatsa who resigned and never retained the vehicle after he was caught in the midst of audit findings for alleging violating procurement regulations in purchasing a JCB backhoe loader that was later discovered to be a second-hand vehicle.
Through his lawyers, Admire Rubaya of Rubaya and Chatambudza Legal Practitioners, Chikwekwe has since challenged his suspension saying his suspension letter contradicts with the resolution which was given by the Special Council.
Chikwekwe was suspended last month following his arrest by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZAAC) for allegedly violating tender procedures a move which saw developers such as Casas and Wackdrive winning tenders to service Mkoba 21 and Randolph Phase 1 suburb stands unprocedurally.
His dismissal is also pointing out to a number of glaring mistakes where the suspended Town Clerk is alleged to have violated Public Procurement and Debt Management Act and there was a continuous exhibition of inconsistency in the discharge of his duties. Efforts to get a comment from the Suspended Town Clerk were fruitless as he couldn’t be reached on his mobile by time of writing.
Former Gweru Mayor Josiah Makombe now ward 2 councillor once held on to council Prado after being recalled by Douglas Mwonzora accused of being loyal to Nelson Chamisa and police intervention was sought to repossess the vehicle as well.

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