THE New Ziana board has exhausted the organisation’s budget for restructuring through the purchase of luxury vehicles for the chief executive officer and heads of department, in
vestigations by the Zimbabwe Independent have revealed.
Sources said the board spent $350 million on vehicles for the CEO and three departmental heads. Each head of department has also been bought an office fridge which cost a further $10 million.
The ambitious New Ziana project, launched by Information minister Jonathan Moyo to establish an electronic division and revamp the national news agency as well as Community Newspapers, was allocated $510 million last year.
The purchase of the vehicles and other luxuries for executives has not gone down well with the workers who are paid between $30 000 and $40 000 a month.
A letter written to New Ziana chief executive officer Munyaradzi Matanyaire by an accountant in Moyo’s ministry, a Ms D Mukoroverwa dated November 22 reads: “New Ziana was allocated $510 million. The allocation includes salaries, wages and allowances, operations as well as maintenance.
“The salaries, wages and allowances cover the full bid for the whole year including any increases and or cost of living adjustment/s that may be awarded. The grant will contribute significantly towards your organisation’s turnaround strategy.”
The sources said the board purchased the latest model Nissan Hardbody for Matanyaire worth over $100 million.
Each of the heads of the electronic, Community Newspapers and news agency departments have been bought a Mazda B2200 double cab.
Matanyaire’s vehicle is awaiting delivery from South Africa. A local dealer, Nissan Clover Leaf Motors, obtains the latest brands from South Africa.
An official at Willowvale Mazda Motor Industries who refused to be identified confirmed the purchase of the Mazda B2200 vehicles by New Ziana at $43 million each.
A source within the New Ziana accounts department said: “We saw the $350 million budget for the purchase of vehicles including others to be purchased for senior staffers in other departments.”
Sources said that electronic division head Happison Muchechetere and Nyasha Masiwa, the head of the Community Newspapers division, had already taken possession of their vehicles.