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Chinamasa, minister clash over council bosses’ suspension

The suspended Makoni (RDC) chairperson Alderman David Guy Mutasa and chief executive officer Edward Pise are known allies of Chinamasa.

Zanu PF treasurer Patrick Chinamasa has protested against the suspension of Makoni rural District Council (RDC) officials for frustrating a government land audit in the district.

The suspended Makoni (RDC) chairperson Alderman David Guy Mutasa and chief executive officer Edward Pise are known allies of Chinamasa.

Pise had saved the local municipality for more than 30 years.

Former Local Government minister Winston Chitando dispatched an investigative team to look into land theft in Nyazura, but they allegedly faced resistance from the duo, which led to their suspension.

There are claims the duo was involved in land theft in connivance with Zanu PF top officials.

In a new turn of events, Chinamasa wrote to the Local Government ministry  protesting against the suspension of his allies.

Sources in the Local Government ministry and Zanu PF yesterday said Chinamasa’s letter raised eyebrows.

“Chinamasa is literally challenging the president since Chitando is his appointee when he says don’t probe my friends,” a source said.

“He is using a Zanu PF card to challenge a minister; it is unheard of where party officials threaten ministers from undertaking their duties without fear.

“If Mutasa and Pise are clean as he claims, he should let the probe continue.”

In a letter dated May 7 with a Zanu PF letterhead addressed to Local Government minister Daniel Garwe, Chinamasa pleaded with him to lift the suspension.

“Your predecessor honourable Winstone Chitando took a decision, which l strongly feel was unjustified and defies any logic unless there is something besides which has not been disclosed to me,” reads the letter.

“Hon Chitando suspended Alderman Mutasa and Edward Pise for allegedly handling a Nyazura Farm, which has been developed and settled as urban development and cannot be reversed or undone.”

He added: “I thus feel strongly that the suspensions of Alderman Mutasa and Pise are not only unwarranted, but cast aspersions on their characters and reputation, something that could have been avoided through consultations.

“I plead with the honourable minister to look into the matter dispassionately and do what is right by lifting the suspensions”

Chinamasa and Chitando could not be reached for comment.

A report presented by the commission of inquiry into the sale of state land since 2005, chaired by Justice Tendai Uchena, revealed there was clear use of high-profile ruling party politicians influencing decisions concerning land appropriation and abuse of office.

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