Corruption-hit Harare suspends stands allocations
HARARE City Council has with immediate effect suspended the allocation of residential and commercial stands following the arrest Harare Mayor Hebert Gomba and other council top officials after they allegedly swindled over US1 million in land deals.
The development was revealed yesterday by the acting Harare Mayor Clr Enock Mupamawonde, who told the Zim Community News that housing allocations are suspended until an automated system has been completed.
“The investigations that unearthed irregularities in the management of housing land were instituted internally and as I as the Acting Mayor, I can reassure you that the due process with the investigations shall continue.
“Meanwhile all housing stand allocations are suspended until the automation of the allocation system which should be completed soon,” he said.
He added that council was inviting IT experts to review and assist in the automation of the housing allocation systems free of charge.
Clr Mupamawonde said the local authority had already appointed acting directors to ensure smooth flow of work.
“I want to reassure our people that council business continues following the arrest of the city’s first citizen, and senior management staffers. Council has since re-organised its departments with the appointment of acting directors in the Housing and Human Capital Departments to ensure work progresses undisturbed,” he said.
Scheduled council, committee and management meetings will now be held essentially across the board.
Gomba, housing director Addmore Nhekairo, acting human capital director Rtd Major Matthew Marara among other top council officials were facing criminal abuse of office charges which led to their recent arrests.
The charges emanate from allegations that 150 stands were created in Kuwadzana from open spaces and sold for private gain, along with more stands in other areas.
There are further allegations that police officers ranging in rank from constable to assistant commissioner,and a chief public prosecutor did not push forward with investigations and prosecutions of some of the suspects and were paid off with stands in Westlea.
The police officers and public prosecutor have since been arrested and appeared in court and have all been denied bail.