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Moyo says council can’t stop Pomona deal, ‘Mnangagwa approved it’

Local Government minister July Moyo has declared that a resolution by Harare councillors to block the corrupt-riddled US$344 million Pomona waste-to-energy deal will not work because President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his cabinet approved it.

The deal that had seen the City of Harare giving out for free Pomona dumpsite to a blacklisted Albanian company, Geogenix B.V stinks due to its outrageous terms.

Residents are expected to pay the company a minimum of US$22,000 a day to dump rubbish there or more if it exceeds 500 tonnes then up to US$40 000 a day.

It was signed while substantive Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume was strategically suspended by Moyo. Then acting Mayor Stewart Mutizwa and MDC Alliance councillors, under the influence of Moyo signed the contract.

Yesterday (Thursday) 23 Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) led by Mayor Mafume adopted two motions to suspend the Pomona Waste to Energy Joint Venture Agreement between the COH and Geogenix B.V.

But Moyo released a statement claiming the deal could not be suspended because it was endorsed by the Zanu-PF cabinet. Moyo further argues that all procedures were followed.

He also said that the meeting prejudiced the judiciary because the matter was in court.

“It is surprising that Councillors went ahead to deliberate on the matter and some members in the City and the Ministry are being sued. We wonder why the Chamber Secretary and a lawyer would proceed to make such a decision,” Moyo said.

“With respect to the project, we wish to advise that all procedures were followed. The City and the investor agreed on terms as to how to execute the joint venture while the investment appraisal was done by the Zimbabwe Investment Development Agency (ZIDA) and also recommended to the Joint Venture Committee.”

Moyo further stated: “All the recommendations from this process went to Cabinet, which is the highest executive authority, for approval and a lower organ cannot violate the principle of subsidiarity.

“Following Cabinet’s approval, the joint venture agreement was closely analysed by Government lawyers, including the Attorney General’s office before it was signed.

“The waste management project, amongst other benefits, will create employment, generate power and assist in refuse management. Government wishes to advise that, in consummating this transaction, rigorous processes to ensure that Council and the country at large derive maximum benefits were undertaken.

“It is confounding that a group of councillors have decided to, once again, appraise this project and in the process causing needless delays and, with it, the risk of jeopardising investor appetite.

“We condemn this conduct which amounts to cheap political grandstanding at the expense of the country and it is therefore necessary to state that the project will not be stopped unless done so by judicial action.

“Again, we state that the matter is subjudice and that some members were mentioned in the legal papers.”

Mafume yesterday urged councillors not to be bullied by Zanu-PF officials.

“Are they God that you have to listen to their every instruction? Who will defend the City if it is not us. This is one of the oldest cities in Africa. We must defend it,” he said.