Five Harare City Council executives awarded themselves more than $60 000 each in holiday allowances at a time a majority of the city’s workers were in five months’ salary arrears and service delivery a shambles.
An audit ordered by Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere showed that five executive managers were paid holiday and contact leave allowances to the tune of $347 340.
The audit also showed that the executives shared more than $170 000 in unsanctioned allowances.
“There was no proof availed to audit that these managers ever went for a holiday granting them authority to claim professional contact leave allowances as resolved in the City of Harare minutes of the sub-committee on the review conditions of service for executive council officials,” said the auditors.
“In July 2015 executive managers were paid allowances amounting to $173 880. There was no council resolution produced to audit that authorised the payment of this allowance to executive managers except for the council’s medical doctors, medical laboratory scientists and medical laboratory technicians,” reads part of the report.
The report shows the average monthly employment costs for Harare City amounted to $10 803 853 while the average monthly service delivery expenditure was $8 748 014 for the period January 2015 to December.
“The council was in five months’ salary arrears for the general staff (December 2015 to April 2016) while executive salaries were only two months in arrears,” reads the report.
The report has led to the suspension of acting town clerk Mrs Josephine Ncube after it revealed that council officials continued to earn obscene salaries in defiance of a Government directive to cut them.
The audit report shows the city’s executives continued to earn between $12 000 and $21 000 from October 2014 to June 2015 as opposed to $10 450 for the highest paid stipulated by the Government.
Addressing full council on Thursday last week, Mayor Bernard Manyenyesni said he was yet to receive a copy of the audit report.
“I had a conversation with the minister and he said he was still to receive the report and once he gets it he will deal with it. Council cannot deliberate on a matter which is still to come before it,” he said.
Environment Management Committee chairperson councillor Herbert Gomba, said the allegations being made by the report were serious and council had to look at them.
Minister Kasukuwere said his ministry was still to review the audit. herald