Although Mangwengwende denied he had taken over management affairs, sources at Zesa said the former power utility general manager is running the show.
The sources said Mangwengwende had been allocated an office at the company’s Samora Machel headquarters, a charge he also denied.
When reached for comment last week, Zesa chairman Noah Madziva denied Mangwengwende was acting CEO, but chips in “once or twice a week” to assist the acting boss.
Madziva said the acting CEO, Eliab Chikwenhere, is of a financial background and needed assistance on the technical side of the business.
He said: “Mangwengwende is not acting CEO. He is a deputy chairperson of the board. The acting CEO has a financial background and we decided that Mangwengwende could assist on the technical side of the business. He has no salary for his assistance and does not get any consultancy fee and is at Zesa once or twice a week.
“He has no office. The arrangement will continue until we get a substantial CEO. My understanding is he (Mangwengwende) has no interest in the job, but is merely helping through the transition.”
Mangwengwende also denied performing the CEO role at Zesa saying he was only a non executive director.
When businessdigest challenged him last week saying his chairman had confirmed his presence at Zesa, he said: “I only help as of when I can, but I am not interested in the job.”
Sources said when Elias Mudzuri was appointed Energy minister last year, he appointed “a very antagonistic board” chaired by Madziva and “curiously deputised” by Mangwengwende.
“The current chicanery centres on the ex-Zesa boss as it appears the man has an agenda to take control of the power utility,” one of the sources said. “Within the very first six months of its existence, the board fought tooth and nail to get rid of Rafemoyo by conducting some dubious CEO performance appraisal. The exercise was temporarily aborted when Mudzuri was reassigned, but was renewed and the war was eventually won before the new Minister of Energy (Elton) Mangoma had even settled in his new assignment.”
Mangwengwende was fired from Zesa unceremoniously in 2000 and later got a golden handshake. He bounced back at Zesa as a board member last year.