Council execs' salaries probe complete

HARARE - The tribunal set up to investigate Harare City Council (HCC) executives’ remuneration has finalised the probe and will soon table a report, Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni has said.

In an interview with the Daily News recently, Manyenyeni said the process had been delayed because the final executive payroll was presented late, as the executives would not release it.

The local authority’s management probe was instigated after the Local Government ministry unearthed that the bosses were still paying each other hefty salaries and allowances at the detriment of service delivery.

“The tribunal literally had to raid and sit-in at the office of the human capital director and demand the payroll for it to be released. Now they have finished the report and have said they will be present it to me in due course,” Manyenyeni said.

According to minutes circulated during a full council meeting early this month, the tribunal complained about the lengthy time they spent conducting the probe.

“...the mayor (Manyenyeni) reported that the deputy mayor (Enock Mupamawonde) and himself had met with the Justice George Smith tribunal on executive remuneration.

“Progress on this matter had been very slow and the panel had raised serious misgivings about the costs of their many professional hours, travel and communication costs,” read the minutes.

“They had requested one final payroll which the Human Capital director had promised to avail on September 28 2017.”

On the back of that, Harare councillors have expressed their bitterness on the secret salary schedule, with Rugare councillor Peter Moyo arguing that management has been hiding their wage bill since 2008.

“We have been crying for this kind of transparency since 2008 and it is unfortunate it had to come out through a report from your ministry.

“The rudeness and stubbornness exhibited by management when they talk to us about this salary issue is appalling.

“They just do not listen to us,” he said.

Furious Moyo added that though they agreed that the salary bill be made public, HCC management still ignored council resolutions and government directives on the issue.

According to the Local Government ministry audit of the local authority, nine executives were overpaid their retrenchment packages by $1,2 million, while they also reportedly received unbudgeted bonuses in excess of $600 000.

It also indicated that 40 executives received education allowances of more than $800 000, as well as $300 000-plus holiday leave allowances.

Furthermore, the report also revealed that $282 000 was transferred into retrenched executive managers bank accounts from HCC’s Beer Levy and Estates account, which was outside of employment costs.

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