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Harare Mayor battle hots up as State moves to bar Mafume from Town House

STAFF WRITER

The National Prosecuting Authority has laid down its intention to have Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume barred from visiting Town House as an added bail condition until the two criminal charges he is facing are finalised.

Prosecutor Michael Reza on Wednesday told regional magistrate Vongai Guwuriro that the State intended to apply for the additional condition to be imposed on Mafume.

Mafume’s lawyer, Thabani Mpofu, in response said he needed time to get instructions from his client before the application was made.

The State’s intention comes as the Harare City Council was on Tuesday forced to postpone the critical decision making full council meeting for the third-time in as many weeks over mayoral chaos

A full council meeting which was scheduled to take place online on Tuesday afternoon failed to kick-off after some councillors denied to recognise Mafume as the capital city’ boss.

Mafume, who was suspended by Local Government Minister July Moyo last year pending the finalisation of his criminal trial, returned to work in early August, insisting that his dates of suspension by Moyo had lapsed without any hearing and that entitled him to return to work.

His return, inadvertently plunged council into chaos with councillors and management caught between taking instructions from Mafume who is backed by Nelson Chamisa or to pay allegiance to acting mayor Musarurwa Mutizwa who is backed by Douglas Mwonzora.

The impasse has shelved key decisions from being made as council’s highest decision making body aborts full council meetings due to factional fights.

On Tuesday, a large section of Councilors wanted Stewart Mutizwa to Chair the meeting at the expense of Mafume.

Sources who spoke to Zim Morning Post said most councillors prefer Mafume but for fear of victimisation from MDC T President Douglas Mwonzora they have decided to side with with Mtizwa.

“We all want Mafume as the Mayor but it is difficult for us to side with him because Mwonzora’s axe will chop us,” a councillor who refused to be named told Zim Morning Post