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Pamushana school principal faces probe

BY PRAISEMORE SITHOLE

THE Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) is investigating the Pamushana High School principal for allegedly selling himself a school vehicle for a song without consulting the school development committee.

But the Reformed Church in Zimbabwe, which runs Pamushana High School, has defended Reverend Innocent Munenerwa saying the cleric did not commit any crime.

A parent who triggered the investigation told Zacc that Munenerwa did not follow tender procedures and failed to consult any stakeholder when he sold himself a Toyota SUV bought by parents.

Zacc chairperson Justice Loice Matanda Moyo confirmed that the anti-graft body was seized with the matter, but referred questions to the commission’s spokersperson John Makamure.

Makamure promised to get details about the issue, but had not come back to Sunday Southern Eye by the time of going to print.

In the letter of complained, the parent claimed a Toyota 2.8 litre truck was sold to Munenerwa between September 2018 and April 2019 without going to tender .

“The vehicle, which is a Toyota 2.8 litre truck was sold for $2 400 which was very ridiculously low compared to the market value of the car,” reads the letter.

“The tender procedures were not followed considering that the vehicle belonged to the school. The vehicle was owned by the parents who were never consulted.”
The complainant said what the principal did amounted to theft.

“When l confronted the deputy headmaster on February 19 2020 he said to me tender procedures were not followed.

“School funds are used to sponsor church activities at the expense of our children’s welfare.

“Last year cement was bought for the church at Pamushana using school funds,” reads the letter.

“Pamushana High School has fake manual books as the church withdraws the money from the school willy nilly,” the parent claimed.

“The church is abusing the money which is supposed to carter for our kids.

“The food situation at Pamushana is ever deteriorating because the church is stealing our money.

“The school account must be managed only by the headmaster, deputy headmaster, SDC chairperson and his vice only.

“The church is allowed to collect 10% from fees collection by the school termly, but however they are said to be collecting 15% from the parents’ money.”

Munenerwa said he was not aware of the complaint.

“l am not aware of the allegations or any letter written by any parent,” he said.

“If l may get the letter first then l might know what really is happening.”

Reformed Church of Zimbabwe general secretary Tafadzwa Masimba said the church recently had internal, external and independent auditors who recommended that everything being done at the school was smooth and above board.

“As the responsible authority of the school, we have our internal and external auditors who recently came and audited accounts,” Masimba said.

“They said everything was good not just at Pamushana High, but also in all of our institutions.

“After the external auditors came, there came an independent auditor and they give what we call an audit opinion that all was fine.

“We also do this for all the RCZ schools. All the audits we had showed that the accounts were good.”

He also dismissed allegations that the church diverted money paid as school fees.

“We do not garnish money from the schools. For example, when we need money for insurance, we call the schools and we have a meeting to avoid risk,” he said.

“We can engage with external partners if we see that the schools have delaed to pay maybe insurance or something so that we can get money to avoid risk mitigation, we do not garnish money.”

He said Munenerwa had not bought the vehicle in question but it was policy that when a vehicle becomes old, it is recommended to be sold.

“We have the vehicle disposal policy, and that vehicle is still registered under RCZ Pamushana High School,” Masimba added.

“The school came with the idea of disposing the vehicle. We are guided by instruments from the government.”

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