Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume

Pienet Zouar

In May 2022, High Court judge, Justice Joseph Mafusire reinstated Jacob Mafume as the Mayor of Harare after setting aside a letter by the Local Government Minister, July Moyo, suspending him for the fourth time.

This followed a successful appeal filed by Mafume through his lawyer, Tonderai Bhatasara.

The judge issued an order ordering the minister not to use the same reasons to dismiss Mafume ever again.

Moyo was also slapped with costs.
Thus was Mafume freed to return to office unshackled and unburdened.

Return of the Knight

Since then the dimunitive politician has gone on a swashbuckling drive cementing his position and flexing his powers.

He has seldom taken any prisoners and in his undertow July Moyo has frothed as many of his contrivances have unravelled.

The ruling party proxy in Council, MDC-T has seen its power diminish and Deputy Mayor Mukunguma embodied the frustration with a flailing rant last week during a Full Council meeting.

He was booted out.

In the wake of this Mafume has emerged as a wet dream for those still cradling hope that the opposition has the capacity and not just courage.

He has led the cancellation of the US$344 million Pomona Waste-to-Energy project.

It’s an enormous move which has gone against the plaintive strains of insistent government propaganda that the project will forge ahead.

In aisles the residents have applauded as the small politician has gone against the giant and is seemingly winning. So far.

Mafume has declared that Council won’t pay. And it hasn’t.

Minister Moyo and government have had to step in and assuage the corrupt throats of whoever is swallowing the proceeds of the Pomona deal, by paying part of the debt.

Mafume has led Council in purchasing three refuse compactors purchased at Conplant using Council’s own funds.

Another compactor and a tipper truck are set for delivery soon.

With both Zinara and devolution funds certainly strangled politically and Harare suffering the effects of sabotage, he will need many such moves.

Against the very spirit of African politics, Mafume has banned any international travelling by City officials.

Now you can be bewitched for this!

The first victims of the resolution were City officials who wanted to travel to China for a benchmarking visit to assess the use and operations of a functional Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system.

Lights On!

Under Mafume Council has embarked on a massive smart street lighting project which is aimed at revamping the city’s lighting infrastructure.

The pilot project is going to cover 35km of the city’s major road network and is being carried out in partner ship with Zesa and Rwanda Energy Group.

The project will see 1202 street lights be installed, throughout the major road network in the city.

The project covers Airport Road, Seke Road, Julius Nyerere, the stretch of Samora between Rekai Tangwena and Enterprise, Seventh Street and Chancellor Avenue up to Churchill.

The pilot project will also cover Rekai Tangwena, Bishop Gaul and Gangues Road.

Council has also instituted a new refuse system where garbage is piled in nearby areas before eventual transportation to Pomona.

This allows for increased collection rounds for the garbage trucks in suburbs, diminishing the chances for illegal dumpsites.

Harare remains a long way off from being the fabled Sunshine City, however Mafume, at the death just before elections, is showing some effort and vision.

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