Zimbabwe: Parly Reports 'Corrupt' Zinara Management to Police

The Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (ZINARA) past and present senior managers face arrest after the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee referred its forensic audit report exposing massive corruption to the police and Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC).

The committee tabled its report and analysis of the audited report of 2017 and 2018 financials of ZINARA Thursday which revealed that the "parastatal absolutely misrun and totally mismanaged state resources running into hundreds of millions of United States Dollars."

The committee then recommended; "the report and the audit report should be referred to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC), the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and the National Prosecuting Authority, within two weeks of the adoption of this report, for a thorough investigation on commissions and omissions by named individuals and officials that include officials at ZINARA, Univern and the then State Procurement Board."

The committee made several findings including that "ZINARA was totally and absolutely misrun and totally mismanaged and as a result, there was gross abuse of resources, no corporate governance culture and no corporate compliance."

It, therefore, recommended that law enforcement agents must investigate abuse of office by current and former ZINARA officials.

The committee also recommended that disciplinary action should be taken within a period of six months upon adoption of the report, against all implicated employees.

"Where employees have left or resigned, we recommend the institution of criminal proceedings for abuse of office or corruption," reads part of the report.

The committee wants the current and former board of directors who unlawfully received allowances outside the terms of reference and contracts to refund the parastatal within six months of the adoption of the report.

"In the event of failure, legal action should be instituted. ZINARA must as a matter of urgency and within three months of adoption of this report, seek expert help from accounting officers, audit firms, human resources firms and legal practitioners to develop the human resources policies and manuals and accounting policies, systems and manuals as well as recruitment policies among other issues."

It was also discovered that unqualified people were "nepotistically" recruited without going through interviews, public scrutiny and public competition.

As a result, ZINARA ended up saddled with incompetent individuals who were controlling and running budgets that ran into millions of United States dollars.

"Corruption at ZINARA, amply demonstrated in this report was as a result of unqualified persons deliberately recruited to emasculate the institution.

ZINARA represents a classic example of the capture of a public institution by nefarious individuals whose sole purpose was to loot public resources," stated the report.

In the report, Transport Minister Felix Mhona and government are called upon to re-examine the mandate of ZINARA, whether or not it has fulfilled its obligations and policy expectations since its formation and consider whether the issue of roads and roads maintenance is still best served by the parastatal or another agency.

According to the committee, ZINARA failed to comply with the procurement laws of the country, in particular the Procurement Act.

"Not only that, particularly in the case of Univern's three software contracts, the committee made the finding that ZINARA deliberately misled the State Procurement Board which then purportedly issued a condonation in some of the contracts.

"Millions of dollars were lost through failure to go to tender, over-payment of contracts or the manipulation and alteration of contracts after the Tender Board had made approval subject to certain conditions or the deliberate misleading of ZINARA."

Mhona was recommended to report to Parliament within two months from the adoption of the report on the urgent corrective measures taken at ZINARA and also within two months to give a breakdown of all amounts paid to Univern by ZINARA from inception to date.

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