By Alex Bell
02 July 2010
Top executives from the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) are being investigated for fraud, to the tune of an estimated US$15 million.
Gibson Boston Siziba, a senior auditor with the NRZ, on Thursday filed a police report that implicated the state-owned rail firm’s finance director Patrick Bondayi and former police commander Frank Msutu, who is NRZ senior manager for security operations.
According to the police report, Bondayi allegedly worked with other officials in the finance department to misappropriate funds by over-invoicing of spare parts. Bondayi was reportedly suspended three months ago to facilitate investigations when details of the alleged fraud surfaced.
It’s understood that the money is being held in offshore accounts, with police indicating that the US$15 million could be “the tip of the iceberg”, according to the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper.
Msutu is also being investigated in a separate case for allegedly failing to act on cases of fraud that were reported to him. According to an initial police report, Msutu was alerted of the fraudulent activities involving senior managers at the parastatal but he allegedly “sat” on the cases.
“Sometime in April 2010, the now accused was handed over a case of serious fraud by the audit department of the National Railways of Zimbabwe to investigate and bring to book the accused (Bondayi),” reads the police record.