ZINARA reports own employees to police as US$21,000 goes missing

November 23, 2020

Brenna Matendere

The Zimbabwe National Road Administration (ZINARA) has made a police report against some of its employees suspected of diverting fuel levies worth US$21 000.

The roads authority is suspecting that workers in its cash office swindled the money that had been paid by clients.

Police spokesperson, Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said investigations were already underway.

“The ZRP can confirm receiving a report on the alleged fraud at the ZINARA cash office,” Nyathi told Grazers News.

ZINARA told the police that, on November 7, the finance director, Adam Zvandasara, requested Chenjerayi Chibatamoto, a financial controller, to verify purported fuel levy receipts submitted by a company called PurOil Private Limited.

When the senior official made the checks, he reportedly noticed anomalies in the manner the transactions appeared in its Sage Pastel Accounting system.

US$15, 840 paid to the roads administrator as levy for 264, 000 litres of petrol by PurOil had not captured in the system, said ZINARA in its police statement.

Internal investigations by ZINARA also discovered that the office bank record of October 21, which was supposed to be signed by five employees in the cash office and attached to the daily transaction report, was missing.

According to the ZINARA report to the police, its own investigations showed that PurOil paid US$5, 280 on November 12 as levy for the importation of 88, 000 litres but the transaction was not recorded in the accounting system.

In 2018, the former ZINARA acting chief executive officer, Moses Juma, was jailed for two years after being convicted of criminal abuse of office.

Before Juma was taken to court, then Vice President, Phelekezela Mphoko, stormed Avondale Police Station and ordered the director’s release.  

The roads authority was at that time funding the vice president’s chicken projects in Bulawayo as Mphoko later admitted.

Between 2010 and 2014, ZINARA reportedly lost over US$40 million in murky payments approved by a former CEO, Frank Chitukutuku, who was subsequently removed from his post and has had his key assets forfeited to the State.

Former transport minister, Nicholas Goche was early this year named as having aided Chitukuku’s alleged abuse of office.

In March this year, the local media reported that top officials at ZINARA created fake companies that they would use to siphon money from the institution.

Some of the fake companies were identified as Eastway, Transistor and Notice.

The companies would allegedly be unprocedurally awarded contracts and paid.

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