Zimbabwe’s Labor Minister Sekesai Nzenza told reporters in Harare, Monday, that the much-awaited forensic audit report of the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) is not yet ready for release to the public, as lawyers are unpacking it to rule out discrepancies, which she said would determine if what happened at NSSA were criminal or simply mismanagement.
“Some of the four issues to emerge were number one to do with corporate governance, number two, issues to do with IT, another one was to do with investment, and other issues to do with HR (Human Resources),” said Nzenza.
“But I want to say that in all those spots, there are some irregularities that required expert lawyers to unpack each one of them. So when you have a forensic report like that and its showing four absolutely key areas, it’s not the kind of report you simply present to the public . It needs to be unpacked, and presented not only to the public, but also to parliament.”
Nzenza dismissed reporters' questions that she is a beneficiary of some of the money looted from NSSA, and that Tourism Minister Prisca Mupfumira, who is currently in jail over corruption allegations stemming from the NSSA funds, had paid her to keep some of the findings in the NSSA report, under lock and key.
“That is nonsense, that is the nonsense I am talking about,” said Nzenza, continuing that “what is important is that if there are monies that are missing within NSSA, our role is to ensure that we recover that, and the forensic report is to enable us to look at the two ways – is there a criminal element? If there are criminal elements, they are being dealt with, within the court. If there are ways we can recover through our internal system that is what we are doing.”
Pressure is however mounting on Nzenza to release the report and get to the bottom of where the millions of dollars alleged to have been stolen from NSSA are and who stole them, with the ultimate aim of returning to pensioners, many of whom lost all their life savings, as a result.
Among those piling pressure is the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) leadership and its members. The group’s Secretary General, Japhet Moyo, said they are prepared to taken Nzenza to court if the report’s findings are not released soon.
“If we see days going by without anything being done as she has said, we have already indicated to her that we will go to court,” warned Moyo. “That seems to be the only way left for us to know the truth. There are many people who know that we, as ZCTU, were the first to complain that we were not happy with the business or investment that was being done by NSSA, and we are not happy with the way the minster is using her authority over the board.”
Meantime, chairman of the NSSA board, Cuthbert Chindoori, said they anticipate the report will be released soon.
“The report is a public document, and it will be put in the public domain,” Chindoori said.