Zinara blames local authorities

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© LOCAL authorities are not providing the necessary documents to Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) for them to receive road rehabilitation funds.

In a statement yesterday, Zinara acting finance director Strauss Tembo said the law allowed them to stop disbursing funds if they were not satisfied with the work done.

“Zinara is committed to clear all 2019 balances, provided the acquittal reports and Interim Payment Certificates are sent on time to our technical department for assessment before submission to the finance department for payment. Assessments are done by Zinara as per the Roads Act to ensure value for money (VFM) on works done by councils and if Zinara is not satisfied with work done, the Act empowers Zinara to stop making any further disbursements to that road authority or council,” Tembo said.

“When councils submit their requests for disbursements, if there is missing information that includes the acquittal of funds previously disbursed, this delays the processing of the documents for payment. Our procedures as per the Roads Act Chapter 13:18 are such that no new disbursements can be made to road authorities before the previous disbursement has been acquitted.”

This comes after Transport minister Joel Biggie Matiza recently told the National Assembly that government was restructuring Zinara so that it can start to remit money to local authorities.

“Now, there is efficiency in disbursing Zinara funds.  What is the problem? It is that many of the local authorities have not acquitted the money they have been given. It is a condition for them to get the next tranche if they acquit.

“We have several local authorities who have not acquitted because most of them have abused the funds. They have bought cars for themselves, they are unable to acquit and that is where the problem is.”

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