The President of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), Nelson Chamisa, has reportedly fired the Mayor of Harare, Jacob Mafume, and six other councillors. They have been expelled from the party because they aligned themselves with disputed party interim Secretary General Sengezo Tshabangu and caused chaos within the party.
Mafume’s removal comes shortly after he was re-elected as Harare Mayor. There were allegations that he convinced Tshabangu to recall the previous mayors – Ian Makone, and Lovejoy Chitegu – so that he could regain his position. Mafume reportedly demanded that councillors vote for him, claiming that he had control over their continued stay in office.
It is alleged that Mafume was hurt by Chamisa’s decision not to support Mafume’s re-election. Mafume had hoped for a second term as mayor after completing the term of former Harare Mayor, Herbert Gomba. An anonymous source told The NewsHawks:
Mafume has been fired for his role in destabilising the party.
He has been fired alongside six other Councillors from across the country. Expect more of these decisions as the party has been observing and now knows those against its agenda.
The other six councillors who were allegedly fired are Deputy Mayor Edwin Ndlovu from Bulawayo, Mayor Sophia Gwasira and Deputy Mayor Cloud Nengomasha from Mutare, and two unnamed councillors from Marondera and Harare.
Tshabangu, a former MDC provincial youth chairperson and member of the MDC-N, has been causing turmoil within the CCC by recalling Members of Parliament and councillors. He claims the recalls are necessary to address irregularities and disrespect for party processes. He claims that the recalled individuals ceased to be CCC members and that they had been imposed on the electorate by Nelson Chamisa.
Some believe that CCC’s former deputy president, Tendai Biti, has been influencing these expulsions due to his resentment towards Chamisa. Biti reportedly wants to ensure the downfall of the CCC. Mafume has a history of supporting Biti, as he previously joined Biti’s People Democratic Party after a disagreement with the late Morgan Tsvangirai, a prominent figure in the pro-democracy movement. Biti denied the allegations saying although he differs with Chamisa’s way of doing things, he would never go as far as giving ZANU PF an advantage on any platform.
It remains to be seen whether the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission will recognize these expulsions, as previous letters signed by Chamisa were ignored by Parliament, despite being acknowledged.