$1m payout for Noczim directors

HARARE - Government was this week forced to pay $1 million in exit packages to five former National Oil Company of Zimbabwe (Noczim) executives to avert the imminent sale of the company’s headquarters, the Daily News can reveal.

The High Court early this year awarded a writ of execution and ordered the deputy Sheriff to attach the state oil importer’s headquarters in central Harare, the chief executive officer’s house in the plush Glen-Lorne Harare suburb, tanks at Mabvuku depot and two properties in Mutare, including the Feruka depot.

Labour lawyer, Rogers Matsikidze of Matsikidze and Mucheche legal practitioners, who is representing the five former Noczim bosses, confirmed his clients had been paid.

“I can confirm that we have been paid. We are elated that finally justice has been seen to be done. Common sense has prevailed.

“My clients have always said there was no need for these court battles we went through because they were entitled to the severance packages,” Matsikidze said.

The properties were supposed to go under the hammer today as the Daily News reported three weeks ago over the outstanding packages amounting to $1 035 255 00, according to court documents.

Matsikidze said the ministry of Energy and Power Development had paid the monies into his clients’ accounts.

“Government just deposited the money into my clients’ accounts and we are happy with what was paid,” he said.

Energy minister Elton Mangoma had previously declared he would not pay because the former managers were under investigation for swindling the national fuel buyer of over $13 million.

However, following the attachments of properties and the setting of an auction date, Mangoma was singing a different tune, telling the Daily News in an interview three weeks ago that it would be irresponsible for government to sit by while Noczim House went under the hammer.

Matsikidze yesterday said they had attached most of known Noczim properties.

“We had attached all including known service stations because we did not know if Noczim House would fetch the required amount in a forced sale. It could have gone for even $50 000 who knows,” said Matsikidze.

Mangoma yesterday referred questions to Noczim directors.

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