Harare mayor earns $1 250 a month

HARARE - Harare mayor Bernard Manyenyeni has furiously rejected allegations that he earns over $520 000 per month, revealing for the first time that he actually receives a monthly allowance of $1 250.

This follows calls for an investigation by Fadzayi Mahere, an advocate, into the ceremonial mayor’s pay following reports that the Town House boss was earning more than 50 times the base government salary for executives.

Residents associations, including the Combined Harare Residents Association (Chra), were due to demand answers at a public meeting in the Flag Room at Town House last night on behalf of struggling ratepayers who have yet to see improved service delivery.

“Does the mayor of Harare really earn $523 000?” Mahere asked rhetorically on social media.

Revelations of the exorbitant salary allegedly paid to the mayor sparked widespread anger on social media, threatening to undermine public support for the MDC-run council.

With anger mounting over the “revelations”, Manyenyeni said reports of an alleged obnoxious salary were “grossly misleading and inaccurate”.

“The mayor is deeply disappointed by such misleading suggestion and hopes this was miscommunication or misinformation and would like to direct residents and advocates to check the ministerial circular which is available for viewing in regards to remuneration for council workers or the mayor,” Manyenyeni said.

In March 2014, President Robert Mugabe’s government slashed pay and perks for managers of State-owned firms and municipalities, in a bid to ease public anger over “fat cat” executive salaries.

Cabinet capped the salary and perks for managers of government-owned entities and city council bosses at a total of $72 000 a year.

“The mayor would like to urge less excitable and irresponsible rumouring as this could be harmful and painfully misleading to the citizens of Harare,”

Manyenyeni said, adding he has clarified the matter with Mahere.

“The mayor of Harare receives a monthly allowance of $1 250 per month. The reality is that his job is a full time non-executive job,” he said.

“The mayor is very grateful to even receive the amount of $1 250 as he is well aware of the difficult economic situation the country is facing. The mayor’s salary is well below any minister or other MP salaries.”

Mahere has said she was not the origin of this rumour nor did she state that the mayor earns this salary.

“Please refrain from suggesting I have created ‘gossip’ in circumstances where I did not state as a fact what the mayor earns. This was posed as a question based on a preceding rumour which the mayor is fully aware of,” Mahere said.

She said Section 62(1) of the new Constitution gives the public the right to ask questions and access information from public authorities in the interests of public accountability.

Ahead of last night’s meeting moderated by Mahere, Manyenyeni said he was “very excited to meet with the residents of Harare tomorrow (yesterday) and answer all questions about issues affecting Harare residents as best as he can”.

Zimbabwe’s economy remains in the doldrums, with growth of less than one percent and an unemployment rate of 90 percent.

With the country already in pre-election mode, critics have seized on the alleged council corruption and exorbitant salaries in MDC-run councils as the opposition’s potential weak spot.

Comments (1)


MERCY - 2 December 2016

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