MDC-T leader Thokozani Khupe has expelled eight Bulawayo councillors and Gwanda mayor Jastone Mazhale.
The affected councillors are former deputy mayor Tinashe Kambarami (Ward 3) whose case is still before the Supreme Court, Donaldson Mabuto (Ward 9), Lillian Mlilo (Ward 16), Concillia Mlalazi (Ward 18), Alderman Earnest Rafamoyo (Ward 20), Tinevimbo Maphosa (Ward 21), Alderman Norman Hlabano (Ward 26), and Alderman Clayton Zana (ward 19).
In a letter to Bulawayo Town Clerk Christopher Dube dated September 11, Local Government Minister July Moyo confirmed that the eight councillors had been expelled by MDC-T and declared their seats vacant.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has indicated that by-elections to fill the vacant seats will be held early December.
Khupe’s spokesperson Khalipani Phugeni justified the recalls saying the party was following the law.
“We did recall 8 councillors from Bulawayo for one reason that they have since left the party. It might be sad, but we have to do this. Constitutionally, once one leaves the party, they cannot then claim to be our representatives in council,” Phugeni told CITE.
Khupe, who assumed control of the MDC party following a March 30 Supreme Court ruling, has been recalling legislators and councillors who have sworn allegiance to MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa, as the battle for control of the opposition party rages on.