HomeBusinessAnother false start to Oilgate hearing

Another false start to Oilgate hearing

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THE disciplinary case involving CMED (Pvt) Limited suspended managing director Davison Mhaka scheduled for today will be postponed to later date as the accused’s advocate is bereaved, the company said yesterday.

NDAMU SANDU
CHIEF BUSINESS REPORTER

Mhaka faces charges of incompetence and alleged fraud after CMED was allegedly fleeced of $2,7 million in a botched fuel deal.

CMED is up in arms with First Oil after the company failed to deliver 3 million litres of diesel despite being paid.

CMED lawyer Aston Musunga told NewsDay yesterday that the hearing would be postponed saying one of the advocates had been fallen by some misfortune in the family.

“On compassionate reasons we had to postpone the hearing. The presiding officers in the case — Retired Justice Simbi Mubako, Patrick Chingoka and Rodgers Matsikidze — will set the new date for the hearing,” Musunga said.

The postponement of Mhaka’s case—the third time it has happened—comes as CMED has completed the hearing on Fuels manager Brian Manjengwa.

Manjengwa was facing charges of gross incompetence or inefficiency in the performance of his work, disregarding a CMED board resolution to purchase bulk fuel from a company which had the fuel in Zimbabwe and fraud.

His hearing was concluded last Friday and a determination would be out this week.

Mhaka was suspended on August 22 to pave way for investigations into incompetence and fraud charges levelled against him after CMED allegedly lost$2,7 million the fuel deal.

Mhaka faces charges of “acts, conduct or misconduct inconsistent with the fulfilment of your express or implied conditions of your contract of employment in terms of Section 4 (a) of Statutory Instrument 15 of 2006”.

This stems from the fact that the CMED board had resolved that bulk fuel be purchased from a company which had the fuel inland, an order Mhaka defied.

He is alleged to have acted in concert with First Oil to defraud CMED.

Mhaka is charged with colluding with First Oil and “deliberately conducted a fraudulent and fake due diligence and defrauded the company of $2,7 million”.

Mhaka faces charges of gross incompetence by awarding a tender to a company without a valid import licence and not on the list of suppliers approved by the State Procurement Board.

He is accused of awarding a tender to a company without first carrying out adequate due diligence “to confirm that First Oil had fuel or the actual capacity to fulfill the tender and purchase order”.

First Oil had won the bid to supply fuel on the strength that it was offering the cheapest price per litre of $1,21 than three other suppliers — Comoil ($1,25), MAPS Petroleum ($1,26) and Sakunda Energy ($1,28) — despite making an unsolicited bid.

It, however, failed to deliver the fuel.

A board of inquiry chaired by former Attorney-General Sobusa Gula-Ndebele unearthed serious irregularities in the awarding of the tender as no due diligence had been done.

The investigations showed that First Oil won the contract despite the fact that its licence had expired on December 31 2012 and was only renewed on May 27 2013, pointing to lack of due diligence on the part of management.

“Technically speaking, this means that management awarded a tender to a company that was not registered in terms of the regulations governing the fuel industry,” the inquiry found.

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