The fathers of the town of Mutare are counting on the involvement of the parliamentary committee on public sector financial affairs, to recover the 330,000 US dollars lost in a botched tender for water.
Mutare city council had lost all hope of recovering funds advanced to Shitazburg Enterprises for the Dangamvura water project.
The contracted company has not delivered any equipment since the start of the project in 2009.
The mayor of Mutare, city councilor Blessing Tandi, recently revealed that the council forgave the debt following several unsuccessful attempts to recover funds paid to Shitazburg Enterprises until the committee opened an investigation into the matter.
“The committee is breaking fire on this case. We have been called to appear before the committee to testify and they are not happy with the case, ”Tandi said.
Attempts by the council to recover the money have hit a brick wall, including a district court ruling in favor of the council, as the location of the storage company’s manager has not been found. been established, the mayor revealed.
He said the company had no offices while company director Anderson Mwashita even threatened to sue the former city clerk, the late Joshua Mwaligwa, for comment in an article published in local media.
“We are happy that Parliament is now so involved in the matter that it suggests that we exhaust all means of recovering this money. We have even engaged the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) in this matter,” he said. Tandi said.
In 2009, the council received a loan from the Ministry of Finance to finance water infrastructure (Dangamvura project upgrade) and sewage systems in high density areas.
Although it announced the end of the water challenges within a year, by the end of 2010 the city council had not replaced the old and smaller pipes with larger ones, n ‘once again not achieving its own goals.
That same year, the council posted US $ 330,000 as security in a fraudulent tender awarded to Shitazburg Enterprises, a company with no experience in the development of major water infrastructure.
Councilor Exavia Upare, who chaired the procurement committee, allegedly pocketed a bribe of US $ 20,000 from the director of Shitazburg Enterprises.
While denying allegations of bribery to tip the offer of US $ 660,000, Upare admitted to receiving US $ 20,000 from Shitazburg, which he said had nothing to do with council business. municipal, although he did not disclose the nature of the business.
In 2011, Upare was arrested and brought to the Mutare Magistrates’ Court on charges of corruption arising from the tender, before being subsequently fired by Zimbabwe’s Minister of Local Government Ignatius. Chombo.