The recent explosion which killed six people at the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) Lions Den silos along the Harare-Chirundu Highway has exposed favouritism in the parastatal’s employment policy and failure to adhere to set safety standards.
BY NUNURAI JENA
Two of the deceased members were from the Marewa family amid reports that workers at GMB were employed through nepotism.
Another victim who lived with the Marewa family escaped death by a whisker and is believed to be recovering in hospital after sustaining serious burns.
Grisham Marewa confirmed that two of his brothers who died were seconded to work at GMB by a Zanu PF official whom he refused to name for fear of victimisation.
“Two of my brothers − Peter Murewa and Colleen Gutse − who died in the accident left families behind and I don’t know how I am going to look after them since I don’t work,” Grisham said.
Peter left behind a wife and one child while Colleen left behind an expecting wife.
Another explosion victim, Foster Mupambwa was a brother to Zanu PF staffer in Chinhoyi, Chiutsi Mupambwa.
The only female victim, Josephine Shamiso Moyo was a sister to a National Social Security Authority (NSSA) employee, a parastatal many workers accuse of not taking action when GMB fails to meet minimum safety requirements.
The fire also ended the promising career of Chinhoyi Stars Football player 24-year-old Craig Chisoro popularly known as Thaza in the soccer circles.
During his visit to Lions Den when he was Vice-President last year, President Emmerson Mnangagwa admitted that most silos in the country needed refurbishment, but nothing has been done to date.
Lions Den silos were built in the 1950s and badly need urgent refurbishment before another disaster strikes.
Efforts to get comment from NSSA officials were fruitless.