Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume was this week suspended for the third time by Local Government Minister July Moyo.
Moyo stated that Mafume had a pending court case thus warranting the suspension.
‘In terms of Section 114(2) and section 114(1)(C) of the Urban Councils Act as amended by the Local Government Laws Amendment Act Number 8 of 2016, I hereby suspend you.
“The suspension is based on the allegations against you which are as follows.
“You were arrested for Criminal abuse of duty by a Public Officer as defined in section 174 of the Criminal Law.
“You were granted bail on the 8th of December 2020 with a number of conditions one of which being not to interfere with any state witnesses”, he said.
Mafume’s suspension paves the way for the Douglas Mwonzora aligned Stewart Mtizwa to continue as acting Mayor for Harare.
Mafume is aligned to Nelson Chamisa’s MDC Alliance.
He was initially arrested on accusations that he gave stands to two of his relatives.
Midway through the trial for that matter he was also accused of interfering with state witnesses.
He has denied both allegations.
The opposition MDC Alliance has dismissed the suspension of Mafume as politically motivated.
MDC Alliance Secretary General Chalton Hwende said they are, “now left with only 4 Councilors”.
This is out of a possible 45.
The massive recalling of Chamisa aligned Councilors by Mwonzora’s MDC-T has seriously ruptured council business.
The entity, already struggling, has become bogged down in inefficiencies, poor service delivery and constantly riddled with scandals.
The Chamisa-led MDC Alliance has since blamed ZANU PF of using Mwonzora to destabilize it ahead of the 2023 elections.