Africa-Press – Zimbabwe. Newly-elected City of Bulawayo Mayor Cllr David Coltart said he was astonished by the self-aggrandisement of some opposition councillors in the city over the past two decades.
Speaking at an engagement meeting with Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) on Tuesday, Coltart said some of his predecessors have been demeaning the values of opposition parties.
He claimed some opposition councillors undermined what the opposition stands for, by using their positions to get preferential access to stands and other benefits from the council. Said Coltart, as quoted by CITE:
There are policies in place that a councillor may get one stand per five years, that’s OK because this is an honorous task, but that’s where it ends.
We must have total transparency. We need to have deep introspection as leaders, we cannot thrive to get on particular committees for particular benefits for ourselves. That has to end.
As councillors, we need to remember that we are elected to serve not to be served. I hope that that will be a dominant theme for the next five years.
We are not here to prioritize what benefits we might get for ourselves by virtue of our positions.
I have watched with astonishment and sat deep in thought in the last 20 years. The opposition in control of this council, has used its elective position to get preferential access to stands and other benefits and in so doing have completely demeaned the office of the councillor and the city council.
They have also undermined what we stand for as the opposition in this country.
We stand for being something different from the regime that has been in power for 40 years.
If we get into office and we do the exact same thing, we don’t just undermine the political party we represent, we undermine the very notion of democracy in our nation. And we undermine the people we love, the people we must serve.
If we don’t demonstrate a different standard of leadership, how can we expect a different standard from other people?
Maybe there are some recently elected individuals who may be seeing this as an opportunity for themselves, we need to set a new standard.
Coltart also revealed that he will forgo getting a new mayoral vehicle during his term of office and prioritise the acquisition of ambulances, fire engines, and refuse collection trucks for the local authority.