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UPDATED : Hwange forensic audit implicates Minister of Mines Winston Chitando & journalists

#HwangeAuditReport

By Correspondent

The Hwange Colliery Company (HCC) Forensic Audit Report alleges that Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando could have been involved in corrupt practices that happened at the company during his tenure as chairperson between 2016 and 2017.

When Chitando was chairman at Hwange, the audit alleges that management embarked on extensive unethical practices which range from bribing journalists in 2017 to the amount of about $44 050 in the name of Social Corporate Responsibility.

NOTE: Open Parly is still verifying that the transactions happened and - if they happened - what they were for. 

There was also flouting of procurement procedures where “companies and persons who had something to do or some links with Mimosa Mining Company got lucrative contracts (haulage and insurance).

“At times connected companies performed incompatible functions, creating room for theft of coal.

Management under Chitando’s chairmanship engaged on acts of nepotism where “recruitment of key personnel concentrated on people from Masvingo Province easily creating the risk associated with Collegial Clan of Control/Old School Boys/Mwana wokumusha chawawana idhla nehama mutogwa une hangamwa/ M’fowethu/ Wachimwene, whereas it is very possible that Matabeleland which houses the School of Mines may equally have relevant personnel for the job, as well, Mashonaland, Manicaland also have skilled people for the tasks befitting a listed company,” said the report on page 217.

The report also alleges that during Chitando’s tenure as chairman, Hwange was also employing people with Mimosa Mining Company background where he was also executive chairman.

“The Chairman Mr. Winston Chitando’s career has taken him through the foregoing two mines, ZIMASCO and Mimosa amongst others. He was the executive chairman at Mimosa.

“Mr. T Marapira who also got a job at Hwange Colliery Company had a senior Mimosa Mine official as his referee and Mr. S Manamike who became the Acting Managing Director had one of his referees as being a Mimosa senior official,” read part of the report.

Mr. Manamike and Mr. Marapira (who both have Mimosa Mining Company background) are said to be the ones who awarded Inductoserve the first contract and this was during the time of Chitando’s chairmanship.

According to the forensic report, Inductoserve (Private) Limited which presented itself as a South African company and was awarded a contract to move coal within the mine area is using a Zimbabwean company Tax clearance certificate yet it is a South African company.

As if that was not enough, the report indicated that “based on the confession of one of the Inductoserve managers the company also offer services to Mimosa Mine, ZIMASCO Mine and ZPC (Chitando has his background from Mimosa and ZIMASCO).

“Instead of Hwange Colliery Company paying the money into a bank account in South Africa, for the Inductoserve services, the money for the haulage services was being paid into a local bank account at Newlands in Harare.

And according to the report Inductoserve (a South Africa company) was invoicing under Inductoserve (Private) Limited of 9042 Industrial Site, Zambezi, Gweru, whose VAT number is 10053013.

“The proximity of the bank where proceeds of crime are banked at Standard Chartered Bank at Newlands, Harare to the Mimosa’s offices also in the Newlands environs creates uncertainty about the Chairman’s independence to Inductoserve,” it said.

The forensic report also reports that “there is possibly illegal use of a Zimbabwe Revenue Authority issued Tax Clearance Certificate by another company called Inductoserve whose head office is Matsa Store Box 119, Gutu.”

The management during Chitando’s chairmanship is also accused of receiving bribes and kickbacks where cars would be imported in names of wives of company executives.

The audit also raised concern over “Hwange Colliery Company school fees policy which sets US$180 per term to US$380 per term for primary school and US$480 per term to US$2 525 per term for secondary school per worker up to a maximum of three children in a company with plus or minus 2 700 employees.”

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Daniel Chigundu

Daniel Chigundu is a male journalist in Zimbabwe and has been practising since September 2009. He used to the editor for The Business Connect (newspaper) in Harare, has his own news website Tourism Focus which is biased towards the tourism sector. Daniel is also working with Magamba Network on their project called Open Parliament where they do live coverage of Parliamentary activities on Twitter and Facebook. He is currently the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Journalists Forum, is a member of Zimbabwe Small Broadcasters Association and a board member of Digital Communication Network. He holds a Diploma in Communication and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA), a certificate in Youth leadership training from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), a certificate in Citizen Journalism from Magamba Network and is currently a first-year student at Zimbabwe Open University studying for a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Ethics and Organisational Leadership.

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