By Sheron Tazvivinga
Traditional leaders in Midlands have sledged Zibagwe Rural District Council for sidelining them in matters of economic development, it has emerged.
Silobela Chief Malisa told Midlands Provincial Affairs Minister Larry Mavima during a tour of the local authority’s projects recently that council was not consulting them in matters to do with development in the area.
Malisa said Zibagwe did not realize the contribution which chiefs could make in matters of development in their areas.
“Council does not invite us to attend meetings that have to do with development which would benefit our communities. They work in isolation as if we do not exist,” Malisa said.
Malisa added that council has not been consulting traditional leaders on matter of development in their areas of jurisdiction.
“This exclusion by the Council has been going on for a very long and nothing has been done to change it. I was only invited to a certain project that is set to start in April after I complained that the council was sidelining us,” said Malisa.
He further told Mavima that Zibagwe had also not explained to the traditional leaders how the devolution funds were being used in the district.
“We do not know how the concept of devolution works and we are not even aware on how the funds from devolution are being used in the district,” he said.
Zhombe Chief Ndabazinhle Gwesela echoed the same sentiments of being sidelined in developmental projects.
“It is surprising that I wasn’t consulted on the construction and even naming of Bhalimasvesve Primary School in my area,” said a frustrated Gwesela before adding that it was, “disappointing.”
Gwesela said councilors must work with traditional leaders so as to help in the development of communities.
“Most of these councilors do not attend ward assembly meetings a platform which can we can use to engage with them,” he said.