By Mthulisi Mathuthu
SW Radio Africa
29 January 2014
Harare Town Clerk Tendai Mahachi, and 18 other Town House managers, take home as much as $500,000 in monthly salaries, reports said Tuesday.
A NewsDay report said the December 2013 salary schedule shows that Mahachi earns $37,642 a month while seven other managers earn $36,999 each. These include Treasurer Misheck Mubvumbi, Human Capital Director Caino Chingombe and Director of water engineering Christopher Zvogbo. The report said the December salary schedule was signed by Mahachi, Finance Director Cosmas Zvikaramba and Human Capital director Cainos Chingombe.
Council spokesperson Leslie Gwindi, who is also a controversial football administrator, is also among the top earners at town house, with a monthly salary of $15,204. Other middle managers earn between $12,500 and $17,000. These include deputy director of housing James Chiyangwa and Godfrey Kusangaya who is the Harare Water manager.
These developments have caused a storm at Town House where tension has been bubbling under the surface over the issue of top management’s salaries. Harare Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni told a press conference Tuesday that the issue of salaries has been ‘a thorny issue for a long time.’
The mayor said that in December he wrote a letter to Mahachi requesting details of management’s salaries, but town house remained evasive. Manyenyeni said rather than supply the requested details Mahachi supplied ‘documents vaguely resembling what we were asking for.’
He said he was ‘dismayed’ by the latest revelations and was not buying claims by the named people that press reports are incorrect.
These revelations come at a time when workers in the water department have not been paid for three months. Last week local government minister Chombo revealed that the government will not be approving the 2014 budgets for Bulawayo, Chitungwiza and Harare if the councils don’t supply the salary details for managers.
This followed reports that executives at the ZBC and the Premier Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) were earning ‘obscene’ salaries. ZBC chief executive Happison Muchechetere was forced into leaving after it was revealed that he was earning a monthly salary of $40,000. PSMAS boss Cuthbert Dube was last week said to be earning over $230,000 from the troubled medical aid society.
Dube was Monday forced to retire following these revelations. A Daily News report Tuesday said Dube could pocket about $20 million as exit package. The report said normal human resources practice dictates that terminal benefits should be calculated at between three to four months’ salary for every year served in the organization. Dube has been with the medical aid society for 27 years.
What this means, said the paper, is that PSMAS with a $38 million debt could be forced to fork out as much as $18,6 million in terminal benefits as part of Dube’s exit package.