VICTORIA Falls residents have warned the MDC Alliance not to meddle in council affairs by imposing a mayor, saying this would lead to a revolt.
BY NOKUTHABA DLAMINI
This was heard on Monday night at Chinotimba Hall where the Victoria Falls Combined Residents Association brought together residents to discuss their expectations on service delivery and council leadership over the next five years.
Community activist Trymore Ndolo claimed that the procedure used to elect mayors and their deputies excluded residents.
The ratepayers claimed that they had been tipped that the party wanted to elect ward 6 councillor Ephias Mambume and ward 3 councillor Margaret Valley as mayor and deputy, respectively and that the duo had already been called to Harare for interviews.
They said their preferred candidate was ward 9 councillor Somvelo Dhlamini, who has been in council since 2013 and was a local resident.
“People come from very far places to dominate the residents. Where I work, I have caused some to be asked back because I find it unjust for one to be employed at the expense of another yet the local will be having the same qualifications and skills or even more,” Vusumuzi Masilela said.
Masilela raised concern over the unfair issuing of curio vending licenses, which has disadvantaged locals.
Another resident said they wanted a mayor who would address the social and economic challenges faced by residents.
“We need a sense of belonging and a person who knows our secrets, our struggles and our strengths, so we would like to urge that party to respect and consider our appeals. We are a very small community and if such issues are handled carelessly, a revolt will be an option,” the resident warned.
Some said it was a mistake for the alliance to be voted into power prior to the scrutiny of its candidates.
“People voted with anger, revenge and unstable minds. What they wanted was change and as a result they voted for a brand, forgetting the quality of a leader, especially the councillors and that is why we are in this situation. They must vote for someone who is not corrupt, greedy and one who understands the local culture and we will embrace that person,” said another resident.
Residents association chair Morgen Dube was tasked to submit residents’ recommendations to the opposition party leader Nelson Chamisa before selection day.
The MDC Alliance made a clean-sweep in all the 11 wards in Victoria Falls urban in the just-ended elections. The councillors will be sworn-in tomorrow.