By NQOBANI NDLOVU
THE Cold Storage Commission (CSC) in 2012 lost nearly US$100 000 when four senior managers purchased 7 company vehicles at undervalued prices, in the process violating their conditions of service and benefits as outlined in the Labour Act.
This is contained in Auditor General Mildred Chiri’s 2016 forensic audit into the financial operations of the once giant meat processor that was tabled before Parliament recently.
According to the findings of the forensic audit, CSC management was in the habit of creaming off company assets such as vehicles at below market prices, resulting in the collapse of the parastatal owing to huge financial losses.
“CSC purchased seven vehicles for US$187 481 in 2011.
“In April 2012, CSC disposed the seven vehicles for a total amount of US$46 982 25 to CSC senior management although these vehicles had a net book value of US$140 610 75 at the time of disposal resulting in a loss of US$93 628 50,” the report read in part.
The CSC board human resources and remuneration committee approved the disposal of the vehicles during a meeting held on February 10, 2012, the report added.
However, the audit report shows that the former chief executive Ngoni Chinogaramombe (pictured) authorised the disposal of the vehicles below market prices through off-setting the difference with leave days in violation of the CSC conditions of service as well as the Labour Act.
“Noting that the four CSC managers including Chinogaramombe did not have sufficient leave days to extinguish the debt, Chinogaramombe approved the reinstatement of forfeited days contrary to the terms set out in the CSC conditions of service, benefits and privileges as well as the Labour Act (Chapter 28:01) for the respective managers,” the audit report read.
According to the report Chinogaramombe, I Machingura, L N Muronzi and P Marufu’s combined leave days had a total value of US$26 486 38.
It read: “The human resources director (Moses Mrewa) advised that Chinogaramombe approved the reinstatement of leave days that had fallen away.
“This suggests an additional loss to the company on the disposal of vehicles to management to the extent of the value of the leave days reinstated.”
Chinogaramombe served the company for almost 34 years, becoming its chief executive in 2005.
He left the company in 2019.