The Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe (TSCZ) has dismantled an internal audit team after it unearthed a series of weak internal controls, which aided financial impropriety and abuse of funds, it emerged this week.
BY FIDELITY MHLANGA
NewsDay has it on good authority that the audit team manager, Patricia Nhutsve was redeployed from the head office and now works at the council’s Chinhoyi satellite office in the operations department.
Another auditor, who was transferred under a cloud is Delix Mugwagwa, who is now a training safety officer in Mutare.
Munyaradzi Muzire, who was part of the three-member internal audit team, resigned after intense pressure from top management.
Sources say the redeployment was done to “kill” all the audit findings and observations stemming from the head office audit report (2013), executive director’s contracts (2015) and internal audit analysis report (2014).
According to impeccable sources, management was irked by an internal audit carried out at the council focusing on the executive directors’ contracts in 2015, which unearthed a series of weak internal controls, delinquencies and poor corporate governance.
As reported by NewsDay last month, the audit observed that TSCZ managing director, Obio Chinyere was on January 29, 2014, offered a vehicle, valued at $65 000.
Instead of Chinyere paying 10% of the value of the vehicle to the council, as prescribed in his contract, he sought authority from the director of administration and finance, Clifford Gobo to sell it.
According to another internal audit done in 2013 focusing on travel and subsistence from 2009 to 2012, the team unearthed a plethora of internal weak controls.
For instance, the team pointed out that in January 2012, Gobo’s acquittal forms were either altered or figures were inflated.
In May 2012, another of Gobo’s acquittal forms was not signed by the head office and was not approved. The audit points out that several receipts were altered to suit the period under review.
An internal audit analysis report of 2014 also exposed that the council was fined $1,8 million by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority for failing to remit pay as you earn and value-added tax, which emanated from entertainment allowances claimed by both the executive and board members.
Reliable sources say the trio has now been replaced with a new team which was sourced externally to allegedly cover up the previous audit findings and dance to the top management’s tune.
When contacted for comment on Tuesday, TSCZ information, communications and technology manager, Tatenda Chinoda promised to respond by yesterday.
“I would like to thank you for your investigative journalism. Unfortunately, I am unable to give you an official response today (Tuesday) as per your deadline due to the fact that I am out of office attending a two-day customer service symposium at Rainbow Towers, which began today (Tuesday). If you are comfortable with getting the response by 8am next day, then I am going to do it,” he said.
Chinoda had not responded to the enquiries by yesterday.