By Mutsa Makuvaza
NORTON Town Council’s Finance Director, Stephen Tendaupenyu has been nabbed over his alleged involvement in a tender scam involving the acquisition of road compactors.
The Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) haa confirmed the arrest, saying the town council is yet to receive the said machinery which was paid for four years ago.
“Norton Town Council Finance Director Stephen Tendaupenyu (has been) arrested for flouting procurement procedures in the acquisition of USD$155 000 roller compactors for the local authority in 2017,” ZACC said in a statement.
“The compactors haven’t been delivered yet. The arrest follows a compliance spotcheck by ZACC’s Compliance and Systems Review Unit as part of its focus on prevention of corruption programmes.”
Tendaupenyu has been Norton Finance Director since 2004, handing him an uninterrupted 17 years in charge of council finances. Before that, he worked as Deputy eputy Bursar (Finance and Administration) at the University of Zimbabwe from the mid-1980s.
Meanwhile, ZACC says similar spotchecks recently resulted in the suspension of Umguza Rural District Council’s chief executive and five councillors, ZACC added.
Five councillors from Umguza Rural District Council were last week suspended for allegedly frustrating investigations by the ZACC.
The suspended councillors, who include the Chairperson, Councillor Alexander Mhlanga, allegedly worked in cahoots with Umguza RDC Chief Executive Officer Collen Moyo who is facing criminal charges to frustrate ZACC investigations.
A ZACC report states that the suspended councillors were not cooperating during the investigations, while some were giving false testimonies.
Deputy Minister of Local Government and Public Works, Marian Chombo said government is not amused by the state of affairs at Umguza RDC.
“Following the conduct of an investigation and subsequent submission of a report on Umguza RDC and the institution of Disciplinary Hearing Committee on alleged criminal activities of the CEO, I hereby, in terms of Section 2 of the Local Government Laws Amendment Act, suspend you with immediate effect from exercising all your duties and roles as a Councillor for Umguza Rural District Council,” she said. – Zimbabwe Voice □