NMMZ bosses in 18 000 litres of fuel scandal

HARARE - National Museums and Monuments of Zimbabwe (NMMZ) executive director and his deputy have appeared in court on allegations of corruptly allocating each other more than 18 000 litres of fuel.

NMMZ executive director Godfrey Mahachi, 59, and his deputy Darlington Munyikwa, 52, were released on $100 bail when they appeared before Harare magistrate Vongai Guuriro.

They are being charged with criminal abuse of office.

As part of bail conditions they were ordered to surrender their passports, continue residing at their current addresses, not to interfere with witnesses and report twice a week to the police.

The matter was remanded to March 28 pending finalisation of investigations.

Mahachi was represented by Justice Masitala while Nyengeterai Pirimikayi represented Munyikwa.

The complainant is NMMZ represented by Finance manager Lydia Mwarevangepo.

Mahachi is the executive director while Munyikwa is the deputy director.

Sometime in June 2013 NMMZ received circular D20/8 from the secretary of Home Affairs which highlighted fuel allocated for personal and business use to management on monthly basis.

According to the circular the minister was allocated 800 litres, permanent secretary 600 litres and director 400 litres for the director.

 The circular applied to all departments in Home Affairs ministry except the Zimbabwe Republic Police.

The court heard that in accordance with the circular, Mahachi and Munyikwa would receive monthly allocation of fuel for personal and business use amounting 560 litres and 500 litres, respectively. It was alleged that Mahachi and Munyikwa also received allocations for specific trips with the institution pool vehicle getting 20 litres, weekly.

Despite the ministerial directive, from 2013 to December 2018 Mahachi and Munyikwa unlawfully acted contrary to their duties as public officers and allocated themselves an extra 40 litres of fuel weekly.  The court heard that the duo had termed the illegal allocations executive errands fuel which they used for family businesses.

According to State papers that fuel allocation was not approved by the NMMZ board or Home Affairs ministry.  NMMZ was prejudiced 18 430 litres of fuel valued $24 751, 57 and nothing was recovered.

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