Gweru City Councilors have warned the municipal administration executive against alleged doctoring of council minutes which they said is stalling development as they are spending a lot of time correcting anomalies at the expense of business on the agenda.
Speaking during the meeting, ward 11 councilor Albert Chirau said the administration needs to record accurate minutes as the continued errors in minute taking may be considered as intentional and meant to misguide council.
“Chakatanga ndo chakachenjedza, with the experience I have the culture of minute doctoring was rife in the past and it is still going on again in this council, we can all agree here.
“It is our worry that if we continue to live with this, it will open us to abuse…doctoring of minutes has been rife and we need to put a stop to that,” councilor Chirau said.
The issue was raised by Ward 17 Councilor Jonathan Muza after it was reflected in council minutes that the Local Authority had made a Memorandum of Agreement with the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe instead of a Memorandum of Understand on the development of Mkoba 21 stands which were halted in August last year, despite several attempts in previous meetings to correct the anomaly.
Chirau said the errors are costly to progress and this move might be seen as a way by administration to hammer in that it was an agreement yet it is otherwise due to an outstanding issue in the memorandum that still needs deliberation and correction.
“Your Worship, look at how costly this mis-capturing or deliberate attempt not to write proper reports.
“We are very much worried about this capturing of minutes, if it is wrong capturing I understand but if it is a deliberate attempt to mislead council into adopting issues or matters which are of significant damage to our existence hear, it will come at a cost like what councilor Chinene said.
“The procedures to correct these minutes take time, some take two months and some up to six months and what is it doing to development in this City?
“This is coming as a warning and I don’t think we need to repeat it again, recording of wrong minutes or attempts to change minutes must stop,” said Chirau.
The Town Clerk Mrs Elizabeth Gwatipedza said the administration has taken note of the concern and action will be taken to ensure that minutes are taken accurately.
“The concerns of the councilors are being noted, but what we are going to do is to check and verify if there any errors being made which will need to be corrected,” she said.