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Gomba elected Harare mayor

By Innocent Ruwende

SEASONED Glen Norah (Ward 27) councillor Herbert Gomba (MDC-Alliance) was yesterday elected Harare mayor, becoming the first mayor from western suburbs to take over the coveted post, while Councillor Enock Mupamawonde retained his position as deputy mayor.

Herbert Gomba

Clr Mupamawonde’s ward is also in western suburbs (Mufakose).

Clr Gomba was unanimously elected after the only zanu-pf councillor Martin Matinyanya, who had nominated himself, failed to get a seconder.

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Clr Matinyanya also tried his luck on the post of deputy mayor, but fell on the wayside after failing to get an endorsement.

In his acceptance speech, Clr Gomba said he accepted his election with the intention of being a servant and a listening mayor.

“Allow me to itemise problems being faced by the City of Harare.

These are water shortages, roads in need of resealing/reconstruction, debts ballooning due to unemployment, mushika shika, congestion, uncontrolled vending, illegal occupation of council land, lack of financial support from central Government just to mention a few,” he said.

Harare has been led by MDC councils since the turn of the millennium.

“Our transformation agenda will also be anchored on the need to review the Harare Combination Master Plan and strategic plan document and work towards attaining the 2025 goal of becoming a World Class City.

This will be done collectively, working together with all relevant stakeholders.”

He said the current review of the Harare Combination Master Plan should take into consideration the need to de-congest the city and prepare a road map for the future construction of ring and overhead highways as well as spaghetti junctions.

Cllr Gomba implored Government to pay through the national budget the five percent constitutional allocation to local authorities.

“Councils should be allowed the latitude to reconnect with the outside world through exchanges, visits and bilateral relations. This can only be achieved if we are allowed to travel for the purposes of engagement and mobilisation of financial support and resources,” he said.

“Government has emphasised re-engagement but we feel at our level we should be allowed full room to engage and source partnerships with the international community. We are the arm of Government closest to the people.”

Cllr Mupamawonde said council welcomes devolution currently taking effect.

“This councils’ mandate is not to fight the Government nor the parent ministry but rather to deliver service to residents.

Therefore, a harmonious and progressive relationship cannot be overemphasised for the betterment of all stakeholders,” he said.

“The fight against corruption will be priority for this council. This council will not tolerate any corrupt and unethical tendencies in the rank and file of council.” The Herald.