The Harare Residents Trust (HRT) has connected Mayor, Herbert Gomba to scandalous deals in the allocation of residential stands on wetlands.
This was revealed by HRT Director, Precious Shumba during a Breakfast Meeting on wetlands management which was organized by the Harare Wetlands Trust and the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR)
Shumba said Mayor Gomba was the Godfather of corruption working with ‘super councilors’ who have taken the responsibility of distributing and allocating wetlands.
“We have a super group of councilors that have assigned themselves the responsibility of distributing wetlands. Key pointers have led us to the Mayors’ office and we have sufficient evidence to prove that if we are challenged. If we had a serious Mayor, corruption would have been gone by now. But what do we have? The godfather of corruption is based at Town House,” said Shumba
He alleged that there were individuals working for the councilors looking for clients to buy housing stands and the scam involves officials from the Ministry of Local Government.
“There are people moving around looking for clients to buy land and they will link the potential buyers to their handlers at council. A combination of corruption officials at the central and local government level is dangerous thing” he said
Shumba called for the inclusion of residents in decision making processes saying their participation will help protect wetlands.
“Residents are being excluded as a result of a corrupt governance system yet we are saying that governance requires active citizen participation. Our major problem is a governance system that is largely excluding the people. When people elect councilors they are choosing people who will protect their interest but unfortunately, residents will wake up to find buildings on their vleis and the people there will tell them that we have been authorized to build,” said Shumba
The current crop of councillors have been implicated in illegal land dealings that have seen land being parceled out on wetlands.