I don't care - ZBC boss

HARARE - Suspendend Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) chief executive officer, Happison Muchechetere, says he does not care about allegations that he was getting in excess of $40 000 salary and allowances per month at a time junior workers were not getting a single cent.

Muchechetere, who was sent on forced leave pending a forensic audit at the State broadcaster, refused to comment on the justification of his huge pay and insisted that he  was unfazed by press reports about him.

Muchechetere has been widely criticised for a pay package seen as excessive during his tenure as chief executive of ZBC.

He said he could not talk about his own compensation amid an ongoing probe.

“Concerning ZBC, I have nothing to say at the moment,” Muchechetere told the Daily News yesterday.

“I will not say anything in the media.

“You guys from the media can continue writing stories about me as you have been doing and you can write all you want.

“I will speak out when the time comes.”

Asked when exactly he would be free to talk, Muchechetere hung up the phone.

Earlier, Muchechetere had told ZiFM Stereo he would await the outcome of the probe, commissioned by Jonathan Moyo, the minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services, into the state of affairs at the State broadcaster.

He said he was not bothered by revelations that he was earning $40 000 at a time workers at ZBC had gone for six months without salaries.

“Ndichambonzwa kuti varikuti chii, hapana zviripo hapana zvekutaura (I will hear what they are saying, there is nothing, there is nothing to say),” Muchechetere said.

Asked if he saw himself returning to the State broadcaster, he retorted: “Haaa, hameno shaa, tinozviona kuti zvinonga zvafamba sei (My friend, I dont know, we will see how things go).”

Quizzed if he harboured any resentment towards people probing his affairs at ZBH, Muchechetere said told ZiFM: “Aiwa hatina basa nevanhu varikungotamburawo zvavo (I’m not bothered with poor souls).”

There has been public outcry and criticism over the ratio of the CEO’s pay to that of the average employee of the State broadcaster who had gone for half a year without pay, a ratio reflective of the growing economic inequality in most parastatals.

As broadcasting standards plummeted and advertising dwindled at the State broadcaster, the real income of most working people also declined and subsequently stopped, whereas the percentage of earnings going to CEOs and senior executives has been growing at staggering rates.

Supa Mandiwanzira, deputy minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services, revealed at a news conference at Pockets Hills Studios earlier this week that ZBC management including Muchechetere were earning astronomical salaries at a time workers have not been paid for the past six months.

“It is quite shocking that for instance the CEO earns $27 000 plus, over and above that earns $3 000 in allowances for housing, $2 500 allowance, $3 000 for home entertainment, unlimited business entertainment allowance,” Mandiwanzira said.

“The corporation must pay off his mortgage facility, must built a durawall (security wall), must built an entertainment section at his premises.”

Mandiwanzira also revealed that the ZBC boss was entitled to unlimited fuel per week, substantial amounts for his domestic workers, unlimited air tickets to fly in the country with his immediate family among other outlandish perks.

If what Mandiwanzira revealed is anything to go about, then Muchechetere, who became substantive chief executive in May 2009, has drawn salaries and allowances approximated at $2,3 million to date.

He was sent on paid leave last month to pave way for a forensic audit to be undertaken at ZBC after minister Moyo dissolved the ZBC board led by Cuthbert Dube after it failed to submit a turnaround strategy document within the 14 days it had requested.

Dube told the Daily News: “We are not allowed to comment pending finalisation of the investigations.”

George Charamba, permanent secretary in the ministry of Media, Information, and Broadcasting Services, last week told a parliamentary portfolio committee that at least 500 workers at ZBC will have to be retrenched in a restructuring exercise meant to turnaround the public broadcaster that is saddled with a $44,3 million debt.

Government has resolved to take over the ZBC debt, according to Charamba.

The corporation is technically insolvent as it is realising only $275 000 per month in revenue against a budget of $2,3 million of which $1,6 million is going to workers’ salaries.

Additionally, the company is in arrears of $8,3 million owed to the workers for outstanding salaries, while it also has to meet other pressing statutory obligations.

Comments (42)

Cde Muchechetere is of course taking advantage of a legal loophole that it was the ZBC Board that awarded him the benefits. The board had to first bribe Muchechetere so that in turn Muchechetere would look the other side while board members awarded themselves hefty sitting allowances!

Dammit - 13 December 2013

Heartless Idiot..... you stopped caring on the very 1st day u started squandering at the expense of your subordinates.......being human enough, you should be apologizing*

nokulunga - 13 December 2013

If yuo probe sitting allowances for the board members at ZBH you will b shocked too

Luxon -ex ZBH employee - 13 December 2013

This a sad story cos since 2009 was the permanent secretary responsible for the ministry not aware of what was happening all along. The board and happison must be grilled by the parliamentry committee on this one. Is happison being paid while on suspension earning this much till when

mhofu - 13 December 2013

He should pay back the money and part of it should go to the salaries of workers instead of Gvt wasting tax payers money assuming all the debt created by this selfish man. We should develop a culture of demanding back what has been unfairly taken from public institutions so that the money is used to develop the country rather than simply firing those who corruptly take what's not theirs. Cry the beloved Country.

Ziziharinanyanga - 13 December 2013

Its sad how a reputable man like him brags about how he's messed up the toilet he's used

Zimbo - 13 December 2013

give us the sitting allowances for the board.. iam sure they are shocking too. i wonder what holier than thou people like the so called bishop manhanga have to say for themselves

chamhembe - 13 December 2013

You are an idiot Muchechetere.

josefa chinotimba - 13 December 2013

Muchechetere is not the only one earning so much,please theTown clerk and the chamber secretary of city of Harare are also in this category

Adventure - 13 December 2013

as a war veteran,the honorable Muchechetere is liberating his family.let him alone.he died for this country.

ndn - 13 December 2013

typical Zimbabwe situation

ndime - 13 December 2013

l just wonder how many of these heartless guys we have in our parastatals who are earning so much when the organization is not making any profits.All top management guys in GMB,NRZ,ZESA etc must disclose their salaries and benefits to the parliament for assessment kuti chaizvoizvo zviyi zvavarikuita ikoko zvinoita kuti vapihwe mari dzaawanda kudaro iyo nyika isina mari yacho,plus they are not even performers in what they are managing,haaaa shit mhani!!!! Varikudzorera nyika mumashure these individuals!!!!

Hapaz Hapanyengwi - 13 December 2013

Muchechetere's money was approved by the board hence to accuse him of self enriching is misplaced. And he danced according to the paymasters' tune. ZTV was transformed into a political party TV station and for the efforts he deserves the money, after all some were busy looting diamonds fearing they might be booted after the elections, aizodiiwo aiva kure nengoda

Citizen - 13 December 2013

Muchechetere served his paymaster well and was paid accordingly because information is power. Now that his employer seeks a new dispensation he now must go. The only problem is with the employer himself who is expressing amazement and surprise. Muchechetere took the opportunity like every else would have done. He did not steal, he had board approval. There are several executives in the public and private sector whose perks are similar or higher than Muchechetere's but have not even resigned. Problem is with the employer who paid discriminately.

Kambiri - 13 December 2013

Mr President can you please freeze all his money in the Bank. Murume uyu haana nyadzi shuva. Ndimi moshoresa vaMugabe imi. He pomotes you then motora advantage apa this time Gushungo tibatsirei muri munhu mukuru hatingakuudzei zvekuita taikumbirawo kuti uyu uwe muenzaniso kuvanhu kuti kana ukapihwa basa hazvirevi kuti utore zvese zviri mudhura.

nitendo - 13 December 2013

This is a typical case of barking up the wrong tree. Muchechetere did not award himself this salary. Who in their right senses would refuse such an offer when it was a free for all.

tsoka - 13 December 2013

Comrade Muchechetere helped Mugabe steal the last election, leave him alone. Chero mukamusunga, anosunungurwa anaBob.

Mike Hove - 13 December 2013

Munotoshamiswa nezvitete izvi. Ko munoti chii chakaparadza Zisco steel, Wankie Colliery? Gore riya Kumbirai Kangai akaitei chibage? Wakasungwa ndiyani? Tibvigwei apo! Mari yekuvaka Mwenezi Dam yakaendepi? Huvori gwuripaZesa, PTC, NRZ neAir Zim hamubgwuvoni? Muchavona Muchechetere akaihwa mbudzi yechibairo, Mugabe muchimunyenyeredza. Makatora mapurazi akanga ainezwirimwa, Hezvo nhasi avamatondo maifunga kuti zvirimwa zvinongonyuka sebgwowa? ZANU nemazezuru mbavha dzevanhu. Mari ye diamond humuidudzi kuti gore rakapera takawana zvakati neyi? Mugabe hausvodi nei? Dana rinofamba ne battalion yose 33 years after independence unotya kuuraiwani? Ndozvinotiratidza kuti nyika haina kusunungukuka.

Mukaranga weZaka - 13 December 2013

This must be just the tip of the iceberg. The municipal council and workers are also abusing ratepayers money and receive hefty salalries!

vortex - 14 December 2013

Thats a primitive package especially when others are getting nothing at all! The problem with some of us Zimbabeans is we dont know when to say its enough! Look at Chiyangwa, Chombo, Obert etc - its all primitive accumulation of wealth. Look at the politicians, they dont know when its time to leave office! Shame, shame, shame!!!

Gondo - 14 December 2013

Heartless and nonsensical man...making others suffer at ur expense!!

Masiziba - 14 December 2013

this is not happenning in parastatals only.Financial institutions also need to be scrutinized.CEOs in Banks are also earning obscene packages.

gregory - 14 December 2013

"The corporation is technically insolvent as it is realising only $275 000 per month in revenue against a budget of $2,3 million of which $1,6 million is going to workers' salaries" I wonder how some people are so dump to not see and appreciate the role of a public broadcaster. ZBC has been unable to air people oriented programmes for so long and we have decided to keep our pockets zipped hence it now insolvent. For as long as they are partisan they will face resistence from the listeners. As for HAPPYson angadiiwo.... mbudzi kudya mufenje hufana nyina. He doesnot care if the other employees are not paid as much as his allies choose to let the whole nation suffer ivo vachiguta........nxaaaaaaaaa.

Itai - 14 December 2013

Misata#nyoko ye Zanu Pf, such as him (or it), have destroyed our beloved motherland.

Fungisayi - 14 December 2013

Nxa!! When did he ever care?! Patriotism of looting!!

Timothy Nanda - 14 December 2013

We dont care either..what we want is for you to pay the money back and we go back to the way we were. We really would not give one flying monkey if you killed yourself, cheated yourself, pleased yourself, robbed yourself or whatever you decide..we would not care less! What we do care about is our MONEY that you must pay back..capiche?

gutter poet - 15 December 2013

vashandi ve ZBC ngavashande vasina mari havana basa vaye. Mayouth kana kuti magreen bomber akapinzwa basa neparty vasina kudzidzira basa. Musatombovanzwira tsitsi nekuti vakapikira kusimudzira zita reparty pasina muripo.

mwana wapresident - 15 December 2013

ZBC is just tip of an iceberg as to corruption levels in government owned institutions where salaries and benefits are used to milk them dry as well as appointment of underqualified chef relatives to high positions. As said above what happened and waht is happening at Municipals, ZISCO, Hwange Colliery, NRZ, ZESA, IDC and mining monitoring boards?

zimbos - 16 December 2013

kudenga kuna Mwari anotonga. only time will tell.

saxon - 16 December 2013

An insolvent party's debt being taken over by an insolvent zanu pf gvt, aaaaa what circus. Hapana chinomuda apa. Seka hako

Jahman - 16 December 2013

An insolvent party's debt being taken over by an insolvent zanu pf gvt, aaaaa what circus. Hapana chinomuda apa. Seka hako

Jahman - 16 December 2013

Pamhata penyu mess ! You would be happy if the boss wears ma slipeers hanti ? Talk too board of directors and leave the man alone . He has nothing to do with finance ,its a board decision .idiots quick to comment but have no knowledge of govenence structures . Shame on u finger pointing zimbos that can destroy a good mans dignity for a few seconds of self ignorance .shame ..

godzwa dhodias - 17 December 2013

In businees terms, what has been happening at ZBH is not a ZBH problem, but is a symptom of bad corporate governance and the widening gap between juniors' and executives' pay. Blaming Mr. Muchechetere at this point is only unfair because whatever he was paid was approved by the board. The real problem in our country is that many parastatals have this tendency of awarding hefty benefits to executives while those who do the real work sweat for peanuts. If you have any knowledge of American business models, you will agree with me that our country pays executives similar to those in the west yet our economy is bleeding from mismanagement and looting. We may blame politicians but they're not entirely to blame. Zimbabwe since dollarisation has grown a culture of corrupt tendencies and financial malpractice. What we are witnessing are symptoms of moral and financial decadence. we need to go back to proper socialistic business ethics. Only then can we overcome these and many more problems to come should we so decide to continue in the path we have taken.

Josiah - 17 December 2013

vana Mugabe varikuda kudzinga munhu anonyatsoziva kuti variga sei maelections. this is not the first time hapana kusara apa vamwe vese vakabviswa after elections silence in courte, the dictator want to rule with iron please. mATSOTSI HAAGERANI.

MUGABE - 17 December 2013

Pane pandisina kunzwisisa mati salary $27000.00plus ,$3000.00 housing allowance,$2500.00 allowance iyi inongori allowance kuti ndeyei hazvina basa,then $3000.00 home entertainment and unlimited business entertainment ''

CHIEAF WHIP - 19 December 2013

How do expect Zbc to generate money when they broadcast crap.

mafia - 19 December 2013

PamberinavaMugabe nemi Cde Happison ...............

joe maneta - 19 December 2013

This is corruption at the highest level and severe punishment will send a message to hungry wolves like this bastard! Sell the damn house, car and get a full refund!

Tony Survivor - 19 December 2013

ndozvavanoita mcimrades even muhondo ndozvavaingoita taitozonyara kuti vana vedu bt hunhu hwavi hauchinje

makumbe benzi - 20 December 2013

Minister of Mines what about Hwange colliery employees 8 months of non salary ,going for xmas just like this DOES THIS COUNTRY HAVE A PRESIDENT we a u pple please HELP us the poor

lmoyo - 20 December 2013

In all fairness why shld the government inherit ZBH`s debts It is only proper that ZANU PF takes over the debt as the sole beneficiary of their mouthpiece.

Diva Chipitiri - 20 December 2014

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