Top earners did not break any laws, says Tomana

via Top earners did not break any laws, says Tomana | SW Radio Africa by Tichaona Sibanda on Monday, March 10, 2014

The Prosecutor-General Johannes Tomana will not file any criminal charges against parastatal heads that were paying themselves hefty salaries and perks.

This move has been roundly condemned by the opposition MDC-T, with one of its MPs, Settlement Chikwinya, describing it as a ‘game of protection’ by Tomana.

Tomana said the CEO’s, who received gross overcompensation for poor performance, had not broken any law in the country. Questions however will be asked if the heads paid any tax to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra).

The salary-gate involves a number of cabinet ministers, parastatal bosses and senior government officials. The scandal first broke out when it was revealed that the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) suspended chief executive officer, Happison Muchechetere, was reportedly earning over US$44,000 per month in salaries and allowances.

His three general managers, Elliot Kasu, Tazzen Mandizvidza and Allan Chiweshe, were each reportedly taking home over US$26,000 every month. Former Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) boss, Cuthbert Dube, was said to earn US$500 000 a month in salary and allowances, while Harare town clerk Tendai Mahachi, and other council executives, were earning around US$37,000 at a time when the municipality was failing to pay workers and provide essential services

In an interview over the weekend, Tomana said while there may be questions on the morality of the remuneration, law enforcement agents could not act because there was no statute which regulates incomes or prices in Zimbabwe.

‘Unfortunately, morals are not laws. Morals can be raw materials that enable you to have certain laws. When a moral pinches you enough it can be raised into a law, but that has not happened.

‘In this case, you ask yourself: what has been violated when there is no regulation or law which controls prices and salaries? There is no law which stops people from earning too much. In court they know we cannot punish people for not breaking the law,’ Tomana said.

However the MDC-T legislator for Mbizo begged to differ with Tomana, saying the parastatal bosses were guilty of a breach of abuse of authority for self-enrichment.

‘When the CEO’s and parastatal board chairmen signed these perks, they were abusing their positions to steal public money. Tomana, being ZANU P,F found it unattainable to prosecute appointees from ZANU PF,’ charged Chikwinya.


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    Nyoni 8 years ago

    This is not finished “Tomuchmoney”TOMANA. Not by a long shot you idiot.

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    Who authorised these huge salaries and perks? If they were self awarded then it should be punishable by law especially if these were state companies or state funded companies. Tomana is protecting these people because of their party affiliation (and probably close friendships). Tomana is quite happy to jail people on non existent accusations that fail in the courts but lets these high rolling thieves get away scot free!

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    Sekuru Mapenga 8 years ago

    There is only one crime in Zimbabwe – disloyalty to Mugabe. If Tomana is not prosecuting, it means that Mugabe is not prosecuting, and therefore there is no crime.

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    tavaziva 8 years ago

    its about ethics mr tomana

    there is a big difference between public sector and private sector and our prosecutor general seems to not know the difference. the public sector is financed by the taxpayers most of whom are struggling to make ends meet as such public managers and the ministry responsible must be accountable to the public. misuse of public funds is a big crime and those who awarded the hefty salaries and the beneficiaries must be prosecuted and their assets must be taken by the state and auctioned to recover the taxpayers money.

    in Zim its different as there is no one who seems to understand the ethics in the public sector.

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    Roving Ambassador 8 years ago

    What’s tomana’s pay. ? Go hang.

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    How much is he himself the prosecutor general earning, a big rat is smelling here people, huuuu.

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    Mlimo 8 years ago

    If this is the main legal mind in Zimbabwe it’s understandable why there is rampant corruption . What an idiot.

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    Ngwena 8 years ago

    Our understanding is that the Minister appoints board members of a parastatal and the chairman of the board and board members are responsible for appointing the CEO.So by the end of the day the CEO reports or is answerable to the chairman and board members.The chairman and board members are answerable to the minister (i stand to be corrected if am wrong here).This means that the salary of the CEO is endorsed by the chairman and the board members,meaning that it is approved by the board,and the minister endorses that.So the minister can approve or disapprove the salary perks of the CEO.My point here is that why is it that the ministers responsible with parastatals that are involved in salary gate being left out.I personally feel that the ministers are responsible for these salary scandals as well.They must be fired as well.

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    jobolinko 8 years ago

    What else can one expect from Tomana and zanu?

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    just saying 8 years ago

    Much of government funding comes directly & indirectly from the taxes we as Zimbabweans and should not be swayed by Tomana to see that someone is answerable for these outrageous salaries heads of parastatals are paid. Since we are required to pay taxes we need to know whether these people have paid income tax on their salaries.
    Somewhere along the line someone has to be held accountable whether it is the head, the board or ultimately the Minister. For thestand Tomana has taken he has become an accessory after the fact.

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    Mseyamwa 8 years ago

    Our prosecutor has lost his marbles. The actions of these men break several laws. It is THEFT to take such a huge salary when the company revenues cannot sustain it. It is FRAUDULENT to purpote to run a medical insurance company when that company, instead of paying the medical services providers, pays only its CEO – and even neglects the salaries of the general workers. It is CRIMINAL to disregard the fact that these firms are parastatals, funded by public funds, not necessarily set up for-profit but primarily to ensure availability of a public good. It is, however, mostly stupid of whoever approved these salaries to have done so without any evidence that the CEO’s had actually brought in any notable, positive change to the firms’ fortunes.

    As always, however, politicians jump into their “we-know-it-all” and “we-think-better-than-thou” attitudes which have made them believe that even when they have no clue as to how to move the country forward, their cluelessness remains the best solution for the country.