CHINHOYI — City fathers have given the local authority’s privatised beer entity, Chinhoyi Liquor Marketing (Chilma) a 14-day ultimatum to produce a detailed financial report.
The demand follows reports of alleged incompetence and corruption at the company.
Finance committee chairperson councillor Divies Zinduru told a full council meeting last Thursday council had resolved to investigate operations of all beerhalls under Chilma.
“We demand the board resubmit a detailed report before we consider terminating it,” Zinduru said.
“Our overall view was the initial report was fraught with irregularities which exposed the board’s mismanagement and incompetence and perhaps underhand dealings.”
It was noted in the financial report, rentals received from tenants at Jongwe, Number One, Alaska and Shackleton premises under Chilma were not declared.
Councillors Tendai Musonza and Simeon Gotami called for Chilma’s urgent disbanding, arguing the loss-making beer entity was bleeding the already cash-strapped local authority.
“The true position is that Chilma is not viable, but there may be one or two people benefiting from its existence. However, the sure thing is council is not benefiting. Chilma must be closed forthwith and have the beerhalls leased out,” said Musonza.
Gotami said there was need for a three-month timeline by which liquidation could be completed.
Chamber secretary Abel Gotora warned council risked litigation by Chilma’s stakeholders if the winding-down was hastily done without due diligence.
Chilma employs 18 workers who would demand severance packages in the event of an “ill-advised” shutdown, it was noted.
Full council resolved to give the board until March 19 to submit the full report before taking appropriate action.
The under-fire board led by Clifford Chisakuwana and his deputy Eddie Kadewere recently stunned a finance committee meeting when they disclosed the firm had last year posted a $9 989,54 net profit, in the form of empty beer bottles and stock, although the entity’s stocks were heavily depleted.