Walter Mswazie Masvingo Correspondent
Residents here have demanded that newly sworn-in councillors should declare their individual assets to promote transparency in the running of the country’s oldest town.
Masvingo’s new councillors led by Mayor Councillor Collins Maboke of MDC-Alliance were ushered into office last week.
Councillor Wellington Mahwende of Zanu-PF landed the deputy mayoral post in the council where MDC Alliance is dominating after winning 7 wards against 3 to Zanu-PF.
Masvingo United Ratepayers and Residents Alliance spokesperson Mr Godfrey Mtimba yesterday said there was need for councillors to declare their assets to guard against city fathers who become overnight millionaires after assuming office.
He said the tendency by city fathers to become instant millionaires soon after assuming office was worrisome.
“We call upon all newly-elected councillors to declare their assets in line with international best practice,” said Mr Mutimba. The MURRA spokesperson said councillors should seek office to serve the people not for wealth accumulation.
“We demand, as part of inculcating a culture of accountability and transparency in our council. We also call upon council to avail stands to residents at affordable prices and openly. It is regrettably to note that residential stands are normally allocated clandestinely to undeserving people, some of whom do not even live in Masvingo at the expense of the bona-fide residents.
“This should end and the new council should guard against such malpractice and maladministration,” he said.
Community Working Group on Health provincial chairperson Mrs Entrance Takaidza congratulated the new council and urged councillors to work together for the improvement of service delivery in the city.
“We expect the health of residents to be taken seriously especially on the provision of adequate clean water. A situation where residents spend two weeks without access to the precious liquid should be the thing of the past, our new councillors should be proactive.’’
Newly-elected deputy Mayor Councillor Wellington Mahwende said residents were free to make suggestions and should assist council to embrace a new culture of professionalism, transparency and sound administration.
“We welcome suggestions from residents. There is no problem in declaring our assets as it will demonstrate our commitment towards fighting corruption. We promise to do our best as new brooms, we need support of residents through payment of their rates,” said Clr Mahwende.