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    Thursday, 26 May 2016

    Nepotism rocks Chikomba RDC

    Managers' children chew up $5 000 monthly as...


    CHIKOMBA – Residents of Chivhu are up in arms against management at the local rural authority who they accuse of nepotism after they recruited 15 students on attachment (almost all of them relatives) and are drawing $5 000 monthly in allowances and wages.
    These students are earning up to $500 each, according to information reaching The Mirror.
    Two of the students are children of councillors, one of them Tinashe Mudzimu is the son of council chairman Pardon Mudzimu and is said to have been given big responsibilities at the local authority. The other is Alfred Manjere who is the son of Ward 8 Councillor Wisdom.
    The 15 are divided into two categories; students on attachment and interns. Interns are earning up to $500 a month while students on attachment are understood to be earning $115.
    Residents complained that council was spending too much money on the children of senior managers and their friends at the expense of service delivery which has nose-dived because of lack of financial resources. Sources said some interns were working in departments that are not related to their qualifications.
    Chikomba Rural District Council chief executive officer, Luckson Mutara said when asked for a comment that if there were any relationships between officials and students, such relationship was petty and could just be same totems. He however, said he would not stop recruiting capable interns simply because they were related to senior managers.
    However, The Mirror established that two of the students were children of very senior councillors and the rest were either directly related to senior officials or their friends.
    Residents said the posts for interns were just created to give jobs to managers' friends and their children. They said if these were genuine positions, council should have advertised.
    Councillors who spoke to The Mirror on condition of anonymity said they were not aware of the students, their conditions of work or their contracts. They said the item has never been transparent.
    Chikomba RDC is a much closed council which rarely gives out information or release information to the Press.
    Some of them students are children of influential people in the town ie, nursing officers, intelligence, pastor, friends of senior managers, relatives of people in the human resources department and one girl is said to be in love with an official.
    Chikomba RDC Chief Executive Officer Luckson Mutara said they did not conduct interviews to take the interns because some of them were former students on attachment at the RDC so the council was fully aware of their performance and behaviour.
    "There was no need for us to conduct interviews for people whom we know of their performance. Also, they are not here to stay but they are just trainees who will go to search for employment elsewhere," said Mutara.
    Interns at the council were jittery when The Mirror inquired from them when their contracts as interns would be terminated.
    The Mirror heard that some interns have been given independent administrative duties, although they are regarded as trainees.
    Fuming Chikomba residents who contacted The Mirror said accused senior officials of personalising council resources by creating unnecessary vacancies for internship, just to incorporate their relatives and children.
    "Chikomba RDC service delivery is poor. Garbage is not collected regularly because the council has no refuse collection vehicles. The council is failing to hire qualified personnel, for instance," said the residents.
    "One of the 54 roles of a Rural District Council is to promote education. If we can afford to pay the allowances for the students on attachments and interns, we hire as many as we can. On the issue of taking council officials relatives, that is a lie. At work, employees can be of the same totem and they create relationship but it does not necessarily mean that they are actually related. Even so, the council will not let competent students go simply because they are related to a council official. We consider one's capabilities not the relationships that exist between council officials and those who seek places for internship," said the CEO.
    He also said that when taking interns or students for attachment, council considers those who reside in Chivhu in order to avoid accommodation problems since the allowances they are paid are not enough to cover accommodation and other expenses.

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