By Innocent Ruwende
Harare City Council has resolved that adequate security be provided for councillors and city officials when council business like pre-budget meetings are being conducted, after a city official was bashed by residents in Hopley.
MDC-Alliance’s Harare Ward 1 councillor, Tendai Katsaria was reportedly attacked by residents in Hopley last month and sustained head injuries.
He was in the company of officials from the city’s Works Department, who were trying to find ways of regularising the residential stands in that area.
According to the 1 878th Ordinary Council Minutes, councillors expressed concern over lack of security for councillors and council officials undertaking council business in the wards.
“A member informed council that the councillor for Ward 1 (Hopley and Churu Farm) had been attacked during a pre-budget consultative meeting and had been hospitalised on account of the injuries sustained as a result of the attack,” read the minutes.
“Council debated the matter and emphasised the need for the Harare Metropolitan Police to provide security to council property, as well as councillors and officials on council business. Council also agreed to refer the issue of the Ward 1 councillor’s medical bills to the Human Resources and General Purposes Committee for consideration.”
Following debate, it was resolved that acting chamber secretary Mr Charles Kandemiri provide adequate security for councillors, officials and council property when council business is being conducted.
It was also resolved that Cllr Gomba engage all relevant stakeholders with a view to resolving the issue of violence and security.
“It was resolved that the issue of the affected councillor for Ward 1’s medical bills be referred to the Human Resources and General Purposes Committee for consideration,” he said. “Town Clerk and acting chamber secretary consider the statutory and policy provisions regarding the proposal to provide security to councillors in security-sensitive areas and find solutions.”
Hopley, like other suburbs in Harare South, has been plagued by double residential stand and illegal allocations on wetlands.
Government and the city have been trying to regularise residential stands at Hopley Farm and provide the requisite amenities.
Council will relocate people residing in areas which were reserved for facilities such as schools and clinics.