The Sunday News
Munyaradzi Musiiwa, Sunday News Reporter
TONGOGARA Rural District Council in Shurugwi has suspended its chief executive officer Mr Brain Rufasha over alleged mismanagement.
In a letter signed by council chairman, Councillor Tamiswa Njovana, Mr Rufasha is accused of among other allegations failure to make a follow up on a backhoe loader from a local earth moving equipment supplier who allegedly failed to deliver the machinery to the local authority.
“This letter serves to inform you that the Tongogara Rural District Council (TRDC) has suspended you from the duties as Chief Executive Officer for Tongogara RDC with immediate effect. This is according to the statutory instrument 15 of 2006. Your suspension is with full benefits excluding operational benefits such as cellphone allowance, fuel and mileage. You are hereby suspended for the period of 90 days pending investigations or a determination whichever comes first. You shall be offered a fair hearing within the next 14 days as stipulated,” reads part of the letter dated 15 October 2020.
According to the letter, additional charges included that Mr Rufasha sent a letter to a subordinate using the messenger of court asking him to report for duty.
“The charges are as follows. Irregularities and inconsistencies in the Finance department which points to subsection 4(1) of SI 15 of 2006.
Your failure to systematically discipline your subordinate and the engagement of the Messenger of Court using the council resources but without the council’s knowledge and approval is deemed inconsistent with your duties. Breach of SI 15 of 2006 Section 4 (f) whereby you failed to take legal or corrective action on the matter of a backhoe loader which you authorised the payment for. You failed to secure investment and also bringing the supplier to book thereby exposing council to financial prejudice,” reads the suspension letter.
Mr Rufasha confirmed receiving the suspension letter.
“I can confirm that I have been suspended pending investigation,” he said. Tongogara RDC paid Pelgin Consulting Services US$67 850 on 27 July 2018 for the supply of a backhoe loader but has not yet received the equipment. Mr Rufasha said the company ordered the equipment from Pelgin Consulting Services and paid for it in full.
Pelgin Consulting Services also allegedly received money from more than 20 Rural District Councils dotted around the country and private companies for the supply of the earthmoving equipment but did not deliver the equipment. Some of the affected local authorities are Umguza, Binga, Bulilima, Bikita, Chaminuka, Chikomba, Chimanimani, Chipinge, Mhondoro Ngezi, Mudzi, Mutare, Mutoko, Muzarabani, Pfura, Tongogara and Zvimba Rural District Councils.