HARARE city council has lost over $10 million within five months due to flawed tender procedures in the procurement of water treatment chemicals.
REPORT BY MOSES MATENGA STAFF REPORTER
Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo-appointed probe team chairperson Ellen Chivaviro told journalists during the handover of the findings to the minister yesterday that council had lost out due to unprocedural ways tenders were being awarded.
“The council has been awarding multiple suppliers. You get 10 suppliers getting tenders and that has prejudiced the city of more than $10 million. They are using the pricing issue as the only credential. We feel they should look at technical issues and capacity. At the end of the day, you find that those who would have been given the tenders have no capacity to supply,” Chivaviro said.
The team recommended dissolution of the council’s procurement committee and that the local authority should deal directly with official chemical manufacturers and not middlemen.
“Councillors lack depth in what is required of them. They seem to be drowning and their decisions are based on
personal benefits,” Chivaviro added.
“Service delivery is not the driving force behind the business at Town House. It’s more of personal benefits. There is no powerful management system and this is leading to gross mishandling of the financial register.”
She said councillors were not taking advice from experts in council as they made decisions against the advice of Chamber Secretary Josephine Ncube.
Town Clerk Tendai Mahachi was also accused of failing to implement council resolutions.
On car sales, Chivaviro said there were over 200 car sales in the city but only 47 had leases with the local authority.
“The town clerk, as head of administration, was a bit lethargic in carrying out what is agreed in council meetings, for example, removal of illegal car sales,” Chivaviro said.
“They are not getting anything from the rest of the car sales. Council has no idea who gave them the authority to have those car sales. They are not getting anything from that. On billboards, Harare has no idea how many billboards are in the city, they have no idea who authorised them and who is receiving money. They have more than 14 000 properties and we felt they could get a lot of money.”
Chombo said the report will be studied and will make a decision on how to proceed with the matter.