Councillors attend meetings drunk: Mafume

Jacob Mafume

Harare mayor Jacob Mafume has accused fellow councillors of attending meetings under the influence of alcohol and drugs causing chaos and senseless disputes.Mafume presided over an explosive full council meeting on Friday last week, where Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) ward 43 councillor, Blessing Duma, attempted to block the proceedings.

Duma got the sympathy of his colleagues after he was removed from the council’s influential audit committee.Addressing the full special council meeting held recently, Mafume said councillors were attending council meetings after taking intoxicating substances.

He made the statement while address councillors and journalists at Town House early this week.“As you all know when preparing to come for the meetings people take different substances. So, certain substances then confuse the person and it takes time for the substance to subside so that they do well and will be able to hold the meeting properly,” he said.

Mafume said some councillors did not comprehend or misread the law resulting in them raising issues that were legally untenable.“Our understanding of the law is very different as councillors and sometimes our level of comprehension is different depending on the tools that one developed for themselves before becoming councillor.

“So, sometimes they misread or clearly fail to understand the law completely and raise their hands to mouth things that are legally untenable.“On Friday, (there) was a robust debate by some who felt for one reason or the other, certain changes ought not to be done. We welcome vitality and the energy of debates. People are free to contribute when there are debates, but then there are times when you feel that people are conniving to sink the council,” he said.Mafume said some motions introduced by councillors were not legally binding.

“The constitution is very clear on how a councillor or a mayor leaves office. And one of them is certainly not by passing the motion in the chamber,” he said.

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