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AAG reports town clerk to Mugabe

by Staff reporter
20 Sep 2017 at 12:02hrs | Views
Indigenous pressure group, the Affirmative Action Group (AAG), has written to President Robert Mugabe to express its unhappiness with the decision by the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) to allocate gold claims to town clerk Christopher Dube and George Mlilo - the permanent secretary in the ministry of Local Government.

Dube, through his company Belmac Investments, was a fortnight ago awarded mining claims located at Aisleby Farm, owned by council.

Mlilo, on the other hand, now jointly won a claim at council's Good Hope Farm along with one Mngane Ncube.

He was able to beat Bulawayo mayor Martin Moyo to it.

Moyo had been shortlisted for the claim awarded to Mlilo.

Founded by flamboyant businessman Phillip Chiyangwa AAG has written to the Office of the President and Cabinet expressing its discomfort at the city fathers' decision, slammed by residents as a blatant abuse of authority.

Curiously, the decision came just a few months after Dube had been blocked from taking up the claims by councillors, who argued that they should benefit the city and not individuals.

In a letter dated September 17, 2017 referenced "Corruption allegations: George Mlilo and Christopher Dube of Bulawayo City Council in allocation of gold claims" addressed to chief secretary to the President and Cabinet, Misheck Sibanda, the pressure group had no kind words for the city fathers.

"As you are aware  . . . Mlilo, who is the permanent secretary of ministry of Local Government, has been allocated gold claims together with . . . Dube, the town clerk for Bulawayo City Council.

"This is abuse of public office and corruption between public officials, who instead of over-seeing the operations and conduct of each other, collude in self-enrichment schemes," reads part of the letter signed by AAG Matabeleland Chapter president Reginald Shoko.

The letter was copied to the BCC authorities.

Apart from engaging Mugabe seeking his urgent intervention, AAG is also threatening to take legal action.

"We therefore request your good office to urgently intervene and curb this rot which is cancerous and detrimental to service delivery," Shoko noted, adding that "a strange coincidence is that the alleged meeting was chaired by the suspended former deputy mayor, Gift Banda, who had his suspension rescinded by the court because . . . Mlilo, on behalf of the Local Government ministry, and Christopher Dube decided not to oppose his court application in exchange for gold claims from Gift Banda."

"We hope you will deal with this matter with the urgency it deserves to avoid us taking it to the courts and the Anti-Corruption Commission) for redress."

Banda, who was last year expelled by Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere over corruption charges, recently resumed duties as the deputy mayor after the High Court ordered his reinstatement.

Recently, residents - represented by the Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association said the move by council was part of "a looting trend by councillors and local authority officials in Bulawayo".

Formed in 1994, the AAG was established out of frustration by the young black businessmen Peter Pamire (now late) and Chiyangwa at the Indigenous Business Development Council (IBDC)'s failure to influence swift changes to the economic environment to favour indigenous black business people.

Unlike the IBDC, the AAG was radical in approach and used more stridently nationalistic language.

It was to become very clear, however, that the AAG was more representing the interests of a few vocal blacks than a broader empowerment vision.

The AAG does not shy away from voicing its concerns over transactions that do not embrace its vision for an empowerment model that is broad-based.

Recently, AAG president Chamu Chiwanza came out guns blazing against the sale of Barclays Bank Zimbabwe to First Merchant Bank of Malawi.

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Source - dailynews
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