The Deputy Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development Mike Madiro has defended his visit to Chipinge Town without informing the town fathers last week.
Madiro went on to hold meetings with the secretariat headed by the acting town secretary James Mutemera.
He also toured projects including roads that are being rehabilitated but the MDC Alliance councillors who remained after the recall of others were excluded from Madiro’s programme.
The councillors, namely town chairman Lovemore Mukwapati, Haruchemwi Vushe Nhengu, Sarah Mlambo and Elijah Mugidho were angered by Madiro’s snub. Said Mukwapati:
How can a Deputy Minister visit a town council and engage the secretariat without the city fathers’ knowledge?
Madiro must have courtesy and protocol. We are surprised that our senator Dorothy Mabika was also part of the programme.
They held a meeting with the secretariat and councillors were not invited. That is not how it’s supposed to be done.
However, Madiro said it was an impromptu visit and he wanted to ascertain the true state of affairs in the town in person rather than being fed with “wrong” information. Said Madiro:
I did an impromptu visit after various cries from Chipinge residents. I wanted to see for myself the natural state of affairs as opposed to being given wrong information.
I really wanted to be informed on what is going on than a formal approach. A formal visit where all stakeholders are called may be done in the course of time.
If they want me to visit, they can invite me and I will come.
Madiro told the meeting that his visit was in response to the residents’ outcry over bad work emerging from the rehabilitation of the town’s roads.
Mutemera said Madiro’s visit was not official as he was passing by while touring roads in the district. He said:
The invitation did not come from the council as the minister was just touring roads in the nearby districts.
It was not an official meeting and it was not a council meeting. He wanted a delegation to assist him in touring the roads.