By Felix Matasva, Manicaland Correspondent
MDC-T president Douglas Mwonzora has recalled Mutare Mayor Blessing Tandi for secretly working with his nemesis, Nelson Chamisa.
MDC-T Manicaland spokesperson, Sekai Gombe confirmed the recall in an interview with NewZimbabwe.com Monday.
He said Tandi was no longer representing the Mwonzora led faction since he was secretly working with Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC).
“Former mayor Tandi was working with CCC but some kind of propaganda was propelled to seem as if he was working with the Mwonzora-led party to evade a recall. He should have been recalled a very long time ago but local government ministry officials were delaying the process,” Gombe said before referring further questions to the party’s national spokesperson Witness Dube.
However, CCC Manicaland spokesperson David Panganayi disowned Tandi saying he expelled himself after falling afoul of the party’s constitution.
“Tandi was no longer with us anymore as he was floating between Zanu PF and MDC-T. We never propelled any propaganda since it was his right to join any party of choice. He exercised that right when the first batch of councillors were recalled,” Panganayi said.
“We understand he was part of the list of recalls, but we never bothered to enquire about the reasons for a delay. We strongly believed he had joined Zanu PF or MDC-T. We are Citizens Coalition for Change and everyone including Tandi is free to join us so that we can finish the job at our hand,” said Panganayi.
Dube revealed that Tandi was recalled some time ago, but the local government ministry delayed notifying the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) under unspecified reasons.
“Basically, the main reason for Tandi’s recall is incompetence. The party is tightening its grip on public officials particularly the mayors who are failing to lead in the level of excellence expected from our local authorities,” Dube said.
Last week, NewZimbabwe.com exposed a collusion between Tandi and three local rights groups to hold dubious residents’ consultative meetings validating a contentious Chinese quarry mining deal.
However, Dube could not confirm if the recall was perpetuated by the deal.
He however said his party was carrying an internal investigation aimed at fishing out corrupt officials and handing them over to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission.
“We are probing most of our public officials with a view of submitting their names to Anti-Corruption Commission. I will not speak on the allegations levelled against our recalled former mayor. We are recalling all officials who are incompetent and not doing enough to justify their mandate from the electorate,” said Dube.
He added that MDC-T national elections directorate will convene a meeting this week whereby applications from bidders to replace Tandi shall be vetted.