Auditor-General raps tender procedures

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
Auditor-General Ms Mildred Chiri has slammed the Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs over its management of the courts and administration fund after she unearthed the flouting of tender procedures, poor management of payment vouchers and non receipt of income.

Ms Chiri also rapped the Zimbabwe Republic Police for lacking consistence after it emerged that they were imposing different fines for the same traffic offences and in some cases imposing fines above standard charges.

“Audit revealed that there were inconsistencies in charges levied against motorists.  Some were below and others above the standard charges in the Deposit Fines schedule for offences without any satisfactory reasons,” read Ms Chiri’s 2013 report.

Ms Chiri gave a diagram of the inconsistencies where an offence of failing to have a plate light for example, a motorist was fined US$20 against the standard fine of US$5.

For failing to secure a seat belt one motorist was fined US$10 instead of US$5. In its response ZRP management admitted the error and attributed it to details failing to carry the schedules on them.

“Officers in charge of the stations concerned have been advised to ensure that members carry sufficient road block equipment including the deposit fine schedule,” read the response.

On the management of Courts and Administration Fund, Ms Chiri unearthed flouting tender procedures by failing to go to tender in respect of goods and services above US$50 000.

“Statutory Instrument 161 requires purchase exceeding US$50 000 to go through formal tender procedures. Contrary to these regulations, the fund administrators paid a total amount of US$234 643 to a fuel supplier in four batches without going through formal tender procedures,” read the  report.

In response management of the Fund said the regulations allowed direct purchase for the requirements of a proprietary nature, making it a special formal tender.