Businesswoman in tender scam

HARARE - Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (Caaz) has dragged the director of a cleaning service company to court on allegations of using fake documents to win a contract from the State Procurement Board (SPB).

Venah Kufakunesu, the director of Sterile System Hygienic Services (Pvt) Ltd is standing trial on fraud charges.

When she appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Court, Kufakunesu denied the allegations and told the court that her papers were in order when she applied for the contract.

She said Caaz and Extreme Cleaning Services were the ones that substituted her documents with fake ones.

Allegations against Kufakunesu arose in June last year, when Caaz flighted an advert in a local newspaper, inviting tenders for cleaning services at the Harare International Airport.

According to court papers, the participants were supposed to have a year’s cleaning service experience, 10 vacuum cleaners, insurance for cleaning equipment, valid tax clearance certificate and a bank statement with at least $50 000.

Kufakunesu responded by submitting her bid for the tender.

Caaz officials then carried out evaluations and thereafter made recommendations to the SPB for the awarding of a tender to Extreme Cleaning Services.

As per procedure, further verifications were done by SPB, the court heard.

The SPB allegedly adjudged that Kufakunesu’s company met the tender requirements.

It is alleged that Caaz carried out their own investigations after it got the information that Kufakunesu’s company had been awarded the tender.

According to State papers, Caaz discovered that the bank account that Kufakunesu had tendered belonged to an individual and not her company.

The board also found out that the tax clearance certificate did not belong to Kufakunesu and that her company had less than one year experience in cleaning services.

It was discovered that Kufakunesu had bought a shelf company in June last year, the court heard.

Caaz reported the matter to the police, leading to Kufakunesu’s arrest.

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