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Directors move to tackle governance crisis

Business
corruption

THE Institute of Directors Zimbabwe (IoDZ) says bad governance has become corrosive in the country, requiring combined efforts to save corporations.

According to the latest Zimdirector Magazine released at the ongoing IoDZ masterclass board audit committee workshop,, bad governance has reached catastrophic proportions.

“Bad governance has been on the toll for quite a long time now and its eradication is almost impossible without industry-wide collaboration, co-operation, and consensus,” said IoDZ president Kangai Maukazuva, writing in the magazine.

In a bid to assist different regulators and industries, Maukazuva said IoDZ had partnered with several organisations such as the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission, Bindura University of Science Education and Good Governance Academy, among others.

“These are strategic partnerships meant to assist different regulators and industry players to hold the good governance banner up high in their industrial sectors,” he said.

However, Maukazuva, said corporate governance had been embraced as a pillar for creating sustainable value for companies.

“A number of institutions are adopting governance structures and best practices in line with Zimcode good governance guidelines. Advocating for good governance is not an event, it’s a long-term process that takes time to reach a level of maturity and more work is being done to put the necessary frameworks through which companies can be governed,” he said.

“We recently witnessed the enactment of the Public Entities Corporate Governance Act, and the recent review of the Companies and Other Entities Act, and the institute is also playing an advocacy role with Zimcode guidelines and director’s handbooks to help cultivate best practices in corporate governance. In addition, the need to get women and youths on boards is critical for a sustainable future.”

IoDZ chief executive officer Catherine Nyachionjeka said bad governance continued to hold back efficiency and promoted corruption.

She added that the institute was pushing for increased women representation in higher positions as well as on boards.

“This is because we are of the persuasion that this would help to break the glass ceiling imposed on women by the long-held societal norms,” she said.

With the escalating risk of natural disasters threatening human survival on the globe, Nyachionjeka said environmental protection and reducing carbon emissions to halt global warming had become urgent matters for world leaders.

She said the institute’s renewed focus on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and sustainability comes as a stitch in time to spotlight the issue currently affecting the country and the world at large.

“It is encouraging that a number of corporates are already running with the ESG issue at the board level, in a bid to contribute and feed into the national plan to cut carbon emissions as well as protect the environment,” she said.

TSL Limited announced plans to build two warehouses this year with energy-saving and carbon emission reductions in line with ESG standards.

Old Mutual Zimbabwe, Implats, Delta are among corporates doing the same.

While facilitating at the masterclass board audit workshop yesterday, corporate governance and risk expert Tagarira Mutenga said emerging risks, such as COVID-19, might need new responses to manage them effectively, as these environmental and industry challenges have the power to threaten or invalidate business models.

The workshop is running under the theme Quest for Holistic Balanced Growth, Governance Best Practice and Integrity of Audit Committees.

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