I'm still town clerk: Mushore

HARARE - James Mushore has insisted that he is “still the town clerk of Harare City Council”, despite his suspension.

Mushore — a former banker — was suspended just two weeks after his appointment in March this year, as Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere argued that his engagement was unprocedural.

He was placed on forced leave without benefits in May.

Although the courts ruled that Mushore was Harare’s town clerk, deputy mayor, Chris Mbanga, blocked him from accessing his office at Town House.

Mbanga’s interference prompted Mushore to file an urgent chamber application at the High Court in June seeking an order to bar Mbanga.

In an interview with the Daily News, the ex-NMB Bank chief executive said he will wait patiently for the day he starts work.

“The High Court application was dismissed as not urgent and I was advised to seek recourse at the common courts but it may not be heard before next year. In the meantime, until such a communication has been proffered, I am still the town clerk,” Mushore said.

Harare mayor Bernard Manyenyeni said it was unfortunate that Mushore had been hounded out of office, despite the court ruling in his favour.

“The court says he is our employee so it is an unfortunate situation that we are accruing his salary every month during this extended period,” Manyenyeni said.

The town clerk position fell vacant in 2015 after Tendai Mahachi was fired on three months’ notice.

Mushore’s appointment caused a raucous between Local Government minister Kasukuwere and Manyenyeni, with the former arguing that the decision had not been approved by the Local Government Board (LGB).

Kasukuwere also went on to suspend Manyenyeni for insubordination after appointing Mushore, despite his objection.

“At the end of the day, Mushore must accept to be subjected to the normal conditions that any other town clerk must go through. There is no politics involved in his hiring. The processes must just be followed without interfering with the LGB,” Kasukuwere argued.

“You cannot destabilise the peaceful and smooth flow of business. If he succeeds at the LGB then he will certainly become town clerk with everyone’s support. What that position requires is the support of the State. You cannot succeed if the government does not support you,” Kasukuwere said.

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