…while Bhila defies the odds
CHIREDZI- There was drama at Chiredzi Town Council recently when Zanu PF’ ward 4 councilor, Charles Njopera cried after Roger Chikonye of the Citizens Coalition for Change was elected Town Chairperson through tossing a coin following a five all stalemate with Zanu PF’s Vimbai Vushe the contestants got five votes each twice.
While CCC members were ululating Chikonye’s lucky win, Njopera reacted by crying to the amusement of onlookers who included fellow councilors and Zanu PF provincial chairperson Robson Mavhenyengwa.
As that was not enough, Njopera was later defeated through the same process by Gift Chigidi of CCC on the post of Environment Committee Chairperson.
Chikonye was the Finance Chairperson in the previous council and is now being replaced by Ushe who got a consolation after CCC’s Musingashari Musingashari through tossing a coin.
Jameson Charumbira of Zanu PF elected as the Vice Chairperson through the same method after another five all impasse.
Charumbira was again nominated for the Finance and General purpose committee, but was blocked after a debate on whether the vice chairperson is allowed to be in the finance committee.
Ward 1 councilor Liberty Macharaga of Zanu PF argued with Chikonye saying there was no clause in the Urban Council’s Act that bars the Vice Chairman from contesting as a committee chairperson.
A ruling was later made by the District Development Coordinator (DDC) Lovemore Chisema who was the presiding officer to seek clarification from a higher office and was advised that it was unlawful for the Vice Chairperson to contest for a committee chairmanship post.
In his acceptance speech, Chikonye said there was need for unity among councilors to provide good services as expected by residents.
“This is not an easy job, residents are expecting an improved service delivery so we have to work together because council is a collection of us councilors so we have to forget about who won or lost but focus on what develops the town.
“To political leaders who are here, understand us and don’t give us unnecessary pressure but guidance, we need your support not to be tossed around , above all we need to consult the residents as we have a lot of issues affecting them,” said Chikonye.
In Chiredzi Rural District Council, Roy Bhila’s brother in-law Aspect Mashingaidze was elected Council Chairperson after defeating Leonard Makondo who was being backed by Chiredzi South Member of Parliament, Joel Sithole, Chiredzi West Member of Parliament Darlington Chiwa and Francis Moyo who lost to CCC’s Ropafadzo Makumire in Chiredzi Central.
Mashingaidze garnered 25 votes against Makondo’s 17.
Mashingaidze said he will work with fellow councilors towards breaking tribal lines in the council and fight for the betterment of Chiredzi at large.
“I feel honored to be elected Chairman and this means as councilors we should deliver and I know we are capable. We should break tribal lines and deliver what the people elected us to do,” said Mashingaidze.