Mangoma nailed over Zesa tender scam

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

PROCUREMENT and Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Praz) chief executive Nyasha Chizu yesterday said former Energy minister Elton Mangoma violated the Procurement Act by giving a South Korean company a contract on behalf of Zesa Holdings without due processes.

Mangoma, who is jointly charged with former Zesa Holdings chief executive Joshua Chifamba and Zesa Enterprises (Zent) managing director Tererai Mutasa, appeared before a Harare magistrate Francis Mapfumo.

The trio is accused of corruptly awarding a $3 million tender to Techpro Private Limited for the manufacture of switch gears in 2011.

Chizu told the court that the trio brought the application to the then State Procurement Board (SPB), an indication that they were aware that Zent was a
procurement entity.

“In terms of the regulations, the value above $500 000 was subject to formal tender procedures. A tender document should have been prepared and an
advertisement must have been placed in the Government Gazette and in the newspapers with wide circulation for a period of 30 days,” Chizu said.

The trio told the court during their defence that Zent was not a procuring entity and were not obligated to follow formal tender processes. Chizu also told the
court that the trio could have placed a special formal tender where one bidder is approved by the board as an alternative. He also said the Procurement Act is
superior to the Public Finance and Management Act whose provisions are merely to complement the former.

However, Chizu was grilled by Mangoma’s lawyer Tonderai Bhatasara, who discredited his testimony, saying he was not qualified to testify on the alleged offence
that was alleged to have been committed in 2011 when he had not joined the SPB.

Chizu replied that the alleged offence was documented.

The trio had also discredited another witness acting Zent managing director Mandipezana Burutsa, who is alleged to have joined Zent in 2015 from Zambia, saying he was not qualified to testify.

Mapfumo postponed the matter to July 17 for continuation of trial.

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