Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
BULAWAYO Town Clerk Mr Christopher Dube reportedly tried to warn the city’s Deputy Mayor Councillor Tinashe Kambarami and his sidekick Councillor Silas Chigora, among others, against flouting procurement procedures saying they risked arrest for corruption.
This is contained in a nearly five minute audio recording that has been circulating on social media.
Clrs Kambarami and Chigora were recently at the forefront of violently ‘suspending’ Mr Dube accusing him of corruption, among other accusations.
Bulawayo Mayor Clr Solomon Mguni rescinded the suspension the following day.
Bulawayo councillors are reportedly divided between two factions angling to control the awarding of tenders and the Town Clerk has stood as a stumbling block to their shenanigans.
In the audio, Mr Dube explains to Clr Kambarami council procurement procedures warning that they would remember his advice when things go sour.
“Deputy Mayor let me tell you, now the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) has been given arresting powers.
There are so many things that would lead to the arrest of certain individuals.
So I have tried to correct you as the city fathers.
I don’t gain anything in this. But it is my duty and obligation to tell you that this thing is not correct, do it this way. I thought I should call you and sit down together with the three other councillors . . . ,” says Mr Dube.
“Chigora in his capacity as chief whip and finance and development committee chair, I’m trying to advise you.
You see you will remember me tomorrow that uDube tried to advise us and it’s up to you to accept or discard my advice. I would have done my part.”
In the audio, the Town Clerk further educates Clr Kambarami on what procurement entails as he seems not to understand.
Clr Kambarami asks whether the issue of parking is a procurement issue to which Mr Dube says it is.
The Deputy Mayor insists:
“No it’s a bit different Town Clerk, you know why I’m saying that because when you are reading on procurement, Procurement Act the first thing is on definition of procurement and procuring is acquiring but are we buying anything in that case?”
Mr Dube responds: “We are buying services from those people. Yes we are acquiring services from those people Deputy Mayor. I’m advising you as your Town Clerk. That is a procurement issue.”
Mr Dube, Clrs Kambarami and Chigora could not be immediately reached for comment yesterday.
The standoff between the Town Clerk and some councillors allegedly started after he resisted their moves to interfere with council management operations.
The councillors are said to be angry that the Town Clerk has refused to involve them in the distribution of the $5 million ward retention fund as well as the allocation of stands and premises. — @nqotshili