Pomona scandal: Moyo forced HOC to pick SA company, dribbled past PRAZ
Local Government Minister July Moyo reportedly instructed the City of Harare (COH) to appoint a South African based audit company Grant Thornton to conduct a feasibility study on the controversial Pomona project without going through the proper procurement procedures.
City of Harare is in the eye of a storm after handing over the Pomona dumpsite to Geogenix BV, a shadowy company allegedly chaperoned by Delish Nguwaya and Collins Mnangagwa.
The city council is expected to pay at least US$22 000 a day and US$14,600,000 a year, cumulatively more than US$300 million after 30 years, according to its contract.
The deal that the Mayor Jacob Mafume described as “atrocious” has caused public outcry because it is the council which is supposed to pay Geogenix B.V for dumping the waste (landlord paying tenant). Residents have already begun to accrue US$22 000 debt per day, money going to Mnangagwa’s son and his family friend.
After investigations, Nehanda Radio established that the City of Harare dribbled past the Procurement Regulatory Authorities of Zimbabwe (PRAZ) and appointed Grant Thornton a South African consultancy firm to do a feasibility study of the project.
A source close to this publication revealed that it was Moyo who ordered the city to choose Grant Thornton and then corruptly write to PRAZ in order to legalise the deal. But PRAZ refused.
“This is some of the evidence that the Waste To Energy deal is being forced down COH and the Harare residents’ throat by the Minister of Local Government,” the source said.
“The ministry instructed COH to appoint Grant Thornton from SA to conduct a feasibility study on the project without going through the proper procurement procedures.
“As usual, the COH has to account to PRAZ when it does all its procurement so just picking this company from nowhere was not going to be possible.
“COH then wrote to PRAZ notifying them that they had been instructed to appoint Grant Thornton and PRAZ had to sanitize or legalize that appointment.”
But PRAZ in response refused to endorse the deal between HOC and Grant Thornton citing that they had not been involved when the transaction was initiated.
“The Authority further noted that the Accounting Officer had been advised by the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works, through a minute dated 8 October 2021, that the appointment of a consultant to undertake the feasibility study can be agreed between the contracting parties being the City of Harare and Geogenix B.V, without being referred to the Procurement Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (PRAZ),” read a letter dated October 15, 2021.
“Accordingly, the Authority, in view of the above, hereby advises the Accounting Officer that there was no basis to consider your submission since the procurement process had already been concluded.”
Meanwhile, the Nehanda Radio source revealed that “COH management is between a rock and a hard place here as they get many ‘verbal’ instructions to implement what the Ministry is ordering yet that will be against laid down procedures and regulations.
“If they do not implement, the arrests and suspensions come in hordes. If they implement, they will be doing a disservice to the city at the same time committing crimes”.
Geogenix B.V is believed to be blacklisted in Europe.
In 2020, Albanian newspaper, City News Albania exposed the company as having “tried to hide their names”.
The newspapers said: “The concession company of 128 million euros, Integrated Energy BV SPV, which has taken over the Sharra landfill and the Tirana incinerator, has single shareholders Integrated Energy BV, a company registered in the Netherlands, a chain of shell companies, which tried to hide their names.”