Source: Parastatals urged to improve service delivery | The Herald June 7, 2019
Government expects parastatals to provide top notch service to clients and move away from the culture of banking on their statutory existence, a Cabinet minister said yesterday.
Lands, Agriculture and Rural Resettlement Minister Perrance Shiri told the new Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) board in an inaugural address that gone were the days when parastatals would give poor service to clients.
“As such, a lot of emphasis has been placed on the need for state owned enterprises to provide top notch services to clients. Gone are the days when parastatals gave below standard services to clients, banking on their statutory existence.
“Also gone is the era where parastatals hide behind bureaucracy to justify poor delivery of service to clients,” he said.
Shiri said the Government was working on the transformation of state owned enterprises to make them viable and more efficient.
“This second republic now expects parastatals to be run on a sound basis that hinges on proper and timely service delivery without resorting to Treasury for financing.
“I thus expect this new board to steer the Zinwa ship so that it operates and metamorphose into a highly customer-centric organisation whose decisions, processes and practices are informed by the need to meet and respond to client needs,” he said.
He implored the new board to interrogate Zinwa management decisions.
“The board should make its priority to instil good and sound corporate governance at Zinwa. The authority’s processes must be situated within the provisions of the various corporate governance statutes that the government has put in place,” he said.
Minister Shiri said the new board, chaired by Engineer Bongile Ndiweni, came at a time when Zinwa had recovered from being a largely loss making entity incapable of meeting its obligations to stakeholders, creditors and employees.
“The authority recorded a US$1,8 million profit and is now firmly placed on a growth trajectory. Therefore I expect the board to build on the current momentum and guide Zinwa on this upward trend and transform it into a highly modernised water utility,” he said.
He, however, lamented that the water utility was owed millions of dollars by its diverse clients.
“The parastatal is currently owed over RTGS $110 million by various debtors with local authorities and farmers owing the bulk of this money.
“You will need to develop innovative ways which allows for the collection of the money while at the same time ensuring farming operations and service provision by local authorities do not grind to a halt,” he said. — New Ziana.