MDC fires 4 Gutu councillors

MASVINGO - Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC has expelled four Gutu councillors over corruption, with the party claiming this is in line with their policy to weed out corrupt officials.

The provincial executive served the four councillors with their expulsion letters after a “thorough” investigation by an internal party probe team convicted them of corrupt activities in the rural district council.

The four councillors, Gutu Rural District chairperson Daniel Jinga of ward 38, Emmanuel Toperesu ward 8, Raymond Chinhenga ward 10 and Fabian Mamombe ward 41 were found “guilty” of fleecing villagers thousands of dollars in botched maize meal programmes as well as defrauding the city council in tender scams.

MDC provincial executive secretary Tongai Matutu confirmed the expulsions.

“It’s true these guys were expelled and we are just sticking to our party policy which is clear and against any form of corruption,” said Matutu, who is also the Youth deputy minister.

“We are setting an example to public office holders from our party that corruption is unacceptable in MDC. Our party is not a functionary of thieves and criminals and those who are doing this will face the same fate,” he said.

Matutu said the four officials were facing charges of fleecing hungry villagers thousands of dollars after they collected money from their wards promising to buy grain following years of drought in the province.

Mamombe and Jinga faced another charge of defrauding the rural council after allegedly forging council minutes to award tenders to undeserving companies in return for kickbacks.

The two were allegedly nabbed after granting a water reticulation and road construction tender for Mpandawana Growth Point to Bravo Construction Company after allegedly altering minutes of a council meeting that had turned down the same firm.

Matutu said the four officials are no longer officially with their party and were free to join any other party.

“These four guys are no longer part of us and  they can no longer do anything on behalf or using our party name,” said Matutu. - Godfrey Mtimba

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