Zimbabwe Salarygate

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"Salarygate" is the name of the scandal unearthed at the end of the year 2013 in Zimbabwe mainly by the public and private media. The scandal continued into 2014 and involved several high ranking government officials and politicians heading Parastatals.

News on Salarygate started as the result of suspension of Happyson Muchechetere as Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) CEO on 14 November 2013.[1] by then new Minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services, Jonathan Moyo. Soon after his suspension, it was revealed in the press that he had been earning a salary of US $40,000 and other benefits a month while ordinary employees of the broadcaster went unpaid for at least 6 months due to viability challenges.

Cuthbert Dube

Later, the chairman of the ZBC board (which itself had also been suspended by Moyo), Cuthbert Dube, was also apparently revealed to have been receiving a monthly salary of $230,000 as CEO of Government Employees (Civil Servants) medical aid society Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS).

At Air Zimbabwe

on the 14th of February 2014 Former Air Zimbabwe CEO, Peter Chikumba, suspended CEO Innocent Mavhunga and managing director Grace Pfumbidzai were arrested for allegedly swindling the airline of US $8,4 million in an insurance scam.[2]

In the City Council

Harare mayor Bernad Manyenyeni suspended town clerk Tendai Mahachi for allegedly pocketing a US $37, 000 monthly salary. Top Council executive and middle managers were allegedly earning between US $12,000 and US $17,000 amounting to nearly US $500,000 monthly salaries.[3] Mahachi was reinstated a few days later by Local Government, Public Works and National Housing minister Ignatius Chombo. Top Council executives and middle managers were allegedly earning between US $12,000 and US $17,000 amounting to nearly US $500,000 monthly salaries.[3] In 2009 Mahachi became the highest paid town clerk in Southern Africa earning a total monthly salary of US $13,000.[4] On the 18th of Frebruary 2014 news started trickling in that Gwanda town clerk, Gilbert Mlilo is allegedly earning a monthly salary of US $16 923,00 including numerous allowances. He is receiving a US $1 014,96 cellphone allowance, US $1 014,96 telephone allowance, US $2 368,23 professional allowance, US $2 706,55 responsibility allowance and a US $278,58 housing and car benefits.

At the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA)

on February 27, 2014 it was heard during a National Assembly session that the head of ZIMRA Gershem Pasi was taking home US $310 000 monthly. The revelation came out when Members of parliament were debating a motion by an MDC-T legislator to capacitate portfolio committees to carry their oversight role in order to redress the Salarygate.[5]

Government Response

On the 18th of March 2014, the cabinet resolved the salarygate by setting a minimum amount that parastatal and local authority bosses are supposed to earn. The cabinet agreed that the bosses should earn not more than US $6,000 and those who were earning more had their salaries immediately slashed to fare with the minimum wage.[6]


References

  1. Minister Moyo Fires ZBC Boss, Board for Incompetence, Voice of America:Zimbabwe, Published: November 14, 2013, Retrieved: July 17, 2014
  2. Zimbabwe airline bosses held for fraud, News24, Published: February 14, 2014, Retrieved: July 17, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 Taurai Mangundhla, Zimbabwe: Corruption - Dealing With Top Officials Elephant in the Room, AllAfrica, Published: February 14, 2014, Retrieved: July 17, 2014
  4. Salarygate claims first scalp in Matabeleland, Bulawayo 24News, Published: February 18, 2014, Retrieved: July 17, 2014
  5. Parliament mulls graft probe team, The Herald, Published: February 28, 2014, Retrieved: July 17, 2014
  6. Moses Matenga, $6000-salary ceiling for parastatal bosses, NewsDay, Published: March 19, 2014, Retrieved: July 17, 2014