Hre town clerk appointment taking long

HARARE - Harare has taken too long to appoint a town clerk and this is seriously affecting the smooth flow of operations at the council.

The city has operated without a town clerk for nearly three years now as political bickering over the post prevented any appointment.

In 2016, council appointed former banker James Mushore to the position after the former town clerk Tendai Mahachi was retrenched.

Mushore was, however, suspended by former Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere.

Following his suspension Mushore approached the Labour Court and the matter is yet to be determined.

If Mushore wins the Labour Court case, Harare City Council (HCC) will be compelled to pay him over $250 000 in backdated salaries.

In February, the Local Government Board (LGB) rejected the three candidates that had been shortlisted for the post by HCC.

Harare mayor Bernard Manyenyeni said while there may be a lot of options they are looking at, council was put in a very difficult position considering the time it has taken to resolve the problem.

“As long as Harare continues to have so many political interests, the filling of the town clerk position will be a difficult task to undertake.

“I cannot, however, project whether this council or the next will have any easy task appointing the city’s chief executive.

“The right candidate for the position should be filled by a business person, who is disciplined, goal-oriented and a game changer. Traditional mind-sets will not take the city where it should go.

“Fresh energy, thinking and drive are needed,” he said.

Manyenyeni said HCC has learnt to live with political leg-irons and that hinders the process to fix Harare when we are chained.

Glen Norah councillor Herbert Gomba said council should not be pressured to appoint someone who did not have the city’s best interests.

Gomba said while they would re-advertise for the post soon, it was important to pick a candidate who was apolitical.

“We will not pick a person they want and if we get our choice during the dissolution period that candidate will be replaced.”

Community Water Alliance coordinator Hardlife Mudzingwa said the position needed to be filled speedily as Harare could not function without a substantive chief executive.

“This position cannot have a person acting in it for so long. We thought that in the 100-day plan laid out by government something would have happened but that has not been the case,” he said.

Local Government minister July Moyo told Parliament last Wednesday that the process to appoint a substantive town clerk for the city had taken too long.

He said the shortlisted candidates did not meet the required criteria of the LGB hence their rejection.

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