Tendai Mugabe, Masvingo Bureau
ZINARA has fired its suspended chief executive officer Engineer Nancy Masiyiwa-Chamisa and finance director Mr Simon Taranhike for gross incompetence and abuse of office, our Harare Bureau can reveal.
The two have pending court cases on corruption charges.
More than 20 other employees were arrested on corruption charges and the cases are at various stages of trial.
Zinara board chairman Engineer Michael Madanha, who is leading the anti-corruption crusade at the parastatal, confirmed the firing of the two senior executives and also revealed deep-seated corruption at the road administrator.
He said lifestyle audits were being instituted to recover looted public funds by some of the Zinara senior managers.
“The CEO and the financial director who were on suspension were fired for gross incompetence and abuse of office after it was realised that all the rot at Zinara was happening under their noses while they were engaged in bruising fights. They as a result failed to act on reports of corruption addressed to them as accounting officers,” said Eng Madanha in a document.
“Both are attending trials to answer to abuse of office at Zinara.”
Eng Madanha said the new board unearthed several revenue leakages that were going on under the watch of the CEO and the finance director as the accounting officers.
Said Eng Madanha: “There are leakages at the tollgates, transit fees and bulk licensing where cashiers pocket public funds and according to a report by one of the employees caught red-handed, the stolen money is shared right up to the echelons of power with rates of contribution by cashiers clearly stipulated.
“There is alarming variance at the tollgates between money captured by the system, money collected and money banked indicating fraudulent activities at the revenue collection points under the supervision of the finance director. Fraudulent activities have been noted in the handling of petty cash managed by the finance department as no records are present on some disbursements and acquittals to provincial offices. Another area of abuse is on fuel coupons which are disbursed without proper paper trail in some cases. The other major problem at the institution is the recruitment process as each director is in charge of filling posts in his department.
“Directors filled up positions with relatives, friends and church members thereby creating an environment which defies corporate governance as workers pay their allegiance to their director and not to the institution.”
Eng Madanha said the corporate culture at Zinara was so bad such that if an employee was caught stealing at a tollgate, instead of instituting disciplinary action against him, the worker is transferred to another tollgate.
He said the management was indifferent to change and accountability insisted on by the new board to protect their corrupt activities.
Eng Madanha said the fired directors were desperate for a comeback hence were giving false stories against the new board to the media.
Acting Zinara chief executive officer Mr Suston Muzenda admitted that there had been financial leakages.
He also said Zinara was filling in critical posts such as those of director, administration and human resources, director (technical), corporate secretary, finance manager and audit manager.