Mismanagement, mega-salaries at Town House – Harare mayor


HARARE mayor Bernard Manyenyeni yesterday lamented the state of affairs at Town House, saying besides gross mismanagement of public resources, the council’s top executives were still taking home their mega salaries of around $20 000 in defiance of a government directive to slash their earnings to below the $6 000 mark.


Government recently ordered all heads of parastatals and public institutions to maintain a $6 000 salary cap until a new universal salary structure has been gazetted.

The directive follows reports that some executives at public institutions were earning obscene salaries while their subordinates were wallowing in poverty.

Addressing members of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Local Government, Manyenyeni also said the local authority was still grappling with the $3 million garnish order by Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA), the effects of the debt write-off by Zanu PF last year, failure to pay workers’ salaries on time and an incompetent management.

“There have not been any salary cuts. There has been an arrangement by government on that, but it has not come to us. We don’t know what’s happening,” Manyenyeni said.

He said council’s general workers were yet to receive their April, May and June salaries while management had not heeded a government directive to slash their salaries to $6 000 and below.

The lowest paid council worker, according to Manyenyeni, was getting a net salary of $161,44 and a total of $306 inclusive of allowances which was lower than the housing allowance of some of the workers in Grade 5 who are getting $380 housing allowance.

According to a salary schedule for council’s top executives presented to Parliament in February, Mahachi was the top earner at council, taking home a total of
$21 000 including allowances.

Other directors get a basic salary of $12 600 before allowances while their deputies take home $12 522.

“Council received a garnishee order from ZIMRA on June 13 which has further crippled our capacity,” he said, adding that they were now negotiating with ZIMRA that requires at least $500 000 a week from the local authority.

He said Harare was in such a precarious situation because of the “populist” policy by Chombo last year ordering all councils to write-off debts owed to council.

“We are in this situation because of the write-off of last year. We lost two years’ revenue due to that and no council can survive that way. That is exactly where our problem is and it will be difficult to forget that,” Manyenyeni said.

“We have a crisis from the 2013 write-off. Those who benefited are saying it happened and it will happen again so why pay while those who did not benefit are saying we paid, but did not benefit the last time so why pay now? It’s the mindset that needs to be changed. It’s a crisis.”

Council chairperson for the Business Development Committee Herbert Gomba said the local authority was owed large sums of money in unpaid rates by the army, police, Parliament and the University of Zimbabwe.


  1. Who recruits the management?where do they report?whats the purpose of the mayor?if the mayor is powerless to oversee the smooth running of council,then there is no need for him to be there,otherwise it is a waste of resources.

  2. Corruption begins from the top. That is why the government is reluctant to stop the rot. It is preposterous for municipal officials to take home such huge sums of money whilst workers wallow in poverty and the municipality does not provide adequate service to the ratepayers. The government will do nothing, but they have plenty of time and energy to prosecute the inane Baba Jukwa rubbish. The country is in an impoverished mess!

  3. Its not the mayors fault but a zanupf mentality of refusing to acknowledge an MDC led council & thus using Chombos office to undermine & overide the power & authority of the mayor

  4. 21000 us divided by 306 us dolaz and that worker going for months without that salary !!!the 21000 us dola earner owning several houses ,the 306us dolar sadly owning nothing.life is unfair though some are educated enough,stl the uneducated will always suffer.thats why i preffer working for myself and at the end of the month i blame noone kana ndisina kuzvitsvagira mari.they gazzete the salary of the lowest worker and they know if the worker pays 150 us rent 60 food ,30 transport,60 for schoolfees zvatokwana .while only their transport allowance wl be more than a thousand dollas,airtime allowance 200 us per day, intertainment allowance 2000 us,housing allowance aaaah hatichataurazve mwana achienda ma schools ema3 thousand per term ndepapi pachazoenza na vana vedu apa

  5. residence must continue to boycott paying rates kusvika mahachi aenda. aluta continua

  6. I stopped paying rates kudhara. Since the salary news came out. Am not feeding some lunatics whilst my tap water smells and is green-brown in color. Nor am I paying to drive in potholes, having no water, no electricity, no refuse collection. They would rather spend $44 mil on vehicles than decide that the city needs it more than the Range Rover. This plea to have residents pay is falling on deaf ears. Some will refuse like me, others have no money because they have not been paid for the last donkey months and some do not have jobs because of these top officials mismanagement. Vicious circle Bernard Manyenyeni. Fix Harare and I will rush to the nearest council office to pay the dues.

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