Mayor caught in web of lies



The Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (ZINARA) has described Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume’s outburst and claims against the company as rhetoric and misplaced as the fight for billions of dollars to refurbish roads continue.

Recently, Mafume accused ZINARA of using a “formula from hell” in disbursing funds for the rehabilitation of roads while also questioning the logic of giving out the authority to license vehicles to the government parastatal.

Zinara CEO Nkosinathi Ncube, however, hit back at Mafume saying the Harare Mayor may have misrepresented facts.

“Whilst we don’t want to respond to rhetoric, we feel duty bound to inform the nation with facts on certain inaccuracies,” Ncube said.

He said ZINARA has consistently disbursed funds for road rehabilitation and maintenance to all the Road Authorities, City of Harare included accusing the metropolis of failing to acquit how it used the money disbursed.

“According to the dictates of the Roads Act, a Road Authority can only access a new disbursement from Zinara after acquitting its previous disbursement. As for the City of Harare it is important for the nation to know that in 2020, their total allocation was 86 million ZWL which could be translated using the prevailing exchange rate at the time and ZINARA disbursed 100 percent of that amount and the city of Harare failed to acquit their last disbursement,” he said.

He said consequently, the city failed to access an early disbursement in 2021.

“The City of Harare’s allocation for 2021 was ZWL$1.3bn which again can be translated to USD using the exchange rate at the time. However, the City of Harare only requested ZWL$154m of this total allocation and failed to utilise in excess of ZWL$1.1bn.”

“In 2022, they are yet to acquit their fourth quarter disbursement of ZWL$566m despite the fact that most Road Authorities have already acquitted their 2022 disbursements. This means that even if funds were to be disbursed today as per the Zinara schedule for 2023, Harare residents will still be deprived of service delivery until their Road Authority follows the dictates of the Road Act.”

He added: “We continue to urge all Road Authorities to timeously acquit the disbursed funds in order to access their next allocation. It is a fact that our roads need to be rehabilitated and we need to work hand in glove to address this. Whilst some may argue the funds disbursed are not enough to meet all the needs, it will also be noble to be transparent and show the nation how the received funds were utilised.”

Last year, then Acting Mayor Stewart Mutizwa said Harare got over ZWL$1.4bn but described it as insufficient as it only covered pothole patching and purchase of uniforms.


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