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The Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality Industry bought six second hand cars worth US$60 000 in 2011 in contravention of laid down Government procedures on the procurement of vehicles. Apart from that, the ministry also spent US$5 271 in servicing one car only once, without getting adequate quotations to prevent prejudice to Treasury, while US$11 000 in overtime allowances was paid to 12 employees without proper records on the dates and time they worked.

This came out when the Permanent Secretary in the ministry Mrs Josephine Nhekairo appeared before the Public Accounts Committee to give evidence on observations contained in the 2011 audit report by the Auditor General’s Office.

Kambuzuma representative Mr Willas Madzimure noted that the ministry had not followed any of Government’s procedures when it bought the cars and quizzed Mrs Nhekairo on why they disregarded set regulations.

“Is this finding correct? What are your explanations to this irregular practice?” he said. “Is it Government policy to purchase second hand vehicles? There was also no independent evaluation of the prices of the vehicles and assessment of the vehicles.” Mrs Nhekairo admitted that the ministry violated Government regulations, but said the decision to buy second hand vehicles was as a result of delays in the release of funds by Treasury.

Source : The Herald

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