New Bulawayo mayor lays out vision

BULAWAYO - For the first time in history, the second largest city is going to be led by a youthful mayor.

At 35, Solomon Mguni, a practising lawyer, becomes the new mayor of Bulawayo.

He will be deputised by Tinashe Kambarami who is three years younger than him.

The Daily News caught up with Mguni who said he is the right man for the job.

“The reason why I applied for the post of mayor is that I feel it’s high time youths take part in the political affairs of this country and take charge in decision-making on issues that affect their day-to-day life,” Mguni said.

“Coming from the private sector, I felt that I could use my experience in administration and apply them in public sector management,” he said.

Mguni, an alumni of the University of Zimbabwe, felt that his legal background will add value to Bulawayo and change the way the city has been run.

“Politics and administration, in my view, is all about law. With my legal background and political history, I felt that I could do things differently and change the way things have always been done in Bulawayo.

“I believe in good corporate governance and business ethics. I want to believe that professional background would come in handy in fighting corruption in local government and also as a bridge between fellow councillors and executive management on issues that may require legal interpretation,” he said.

Mguni quickly laid out his vision, describing the once pristine city as a scrap yard due to its heavy de-industrialisation.

“My vision is to turn the economic fortunes of Bulawayo.

“Bulawayo is now what I would call a scrap yard.

“It’s a sleeping giant which needs reawakening. We need to get councillors to pass investor-friendly resolutions that attract fresh capital.

“We will come up with incentives to industry and commerce and more importantly to support small and imaging businesses and create employment for our people,” he said.

He said he was going to engage the business community for the progress of the city.

“We need to sit down with business people and understand what challenges they are facing and what it is that they want council to do to assist them.

“Council must now play more that facilitative role in bringing investors. We need a robust marketing strategy to market Bulawayo on the international scale,” he said.

Mguni also said he was going to revisit twinning arrangements with progressive cities such as Aberdeen and Durban.

“Business people and captains of industry must now travel with council delegations on such business trips abroad so that they tap into benefits flowing from twin cities,” he said.

The mayor said the city was 30 years behind in terms of development.

“We need to transform Bulawayo infrastructure. Bulawayo is 30 years behind in terms of development. We can’t afford to continue being cry-babies. We need to modernise the city infrastructure

“Projects like the Egodini Mall must take off without further delays.

“Those involved in such capital projects must deliver or risk withdrawal of the projects.”

He was, however, quick to say he appreciated his predecessors for maintaining the legacy of the city.


SOLOMON MGUNI FACT SHEET...

Solomon Mguni was born on September 7, 1983 in Gwatemba, Filabusi.

He grew up in Gokwe after his father moved there after retirement from Zesa, Munyati Power Station, Kwekwe in 1987.

Mguni did his primary education at Mhali Primary School, in Magwegwe, Bulawayo between 1990 and 1996.

He did his secondary education in Gokwe’s Kubatana Nyamuroro High School between 1997 and 2002 after which proceeded to the University of Zimbabwe where he studied law from 2004 to 2008.

He has worked as legal practitioner at Masiye-Moyo & Associates from graduation up to 2014.

In 2015, he founded a law firm called Dube; Mguni & Dube Legal practitioners.

He is a practising lawyer and managing partner of the firm.

He began political activism at the University of Zimbabwe when he joined the MDC branch on campus upon enrolment in August 2004 up to graduation in October 2008.

Comments (2)

It would be good for a Newspaper of this caliber to carry out grammatical and spelling corrections as you publish.

KayCee - 10 September 2018

Letter to Mguni Congratulations on your new post. I do not know you but I fully support your ideals, it is my wish that you realize all your dreams about our second city, and that you are fully supported by those around you. The success of Byo is the success of our country. With right investment luring strategies and absence of corruption, I envisage a new beautiful functioning Byo, it's not going to be easy but with every step in the right direction you/we shall win. It's time to look at other successful models in other countries to see how they are doing it. City of Capetown is one example that I can vouch for. Good Luck. Our beloved country can stop crying.

Den - 10 September 2018

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