Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo has withdrawn Dr Dennis Magaya’s appointment as Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation board chair for his alleged involvement in salary and procurement scandals at national power utility, Zesa.
The ministry had appointed an 11-member board chaired by Dr Magaya (44) to spearhead restructuring and turnaround of the national broadcaster.
Father Gibson Munyoro — a respected Catholic cleric with a passion for peace and national development locally and in the region — will now chair the board.
Prof Moyo yesterday said the ministry had completely withdrawn Dr Magaya’s appointment to the board.
“This is after the ministry learnt today that despite Dr Magaya’s previous submissions, backed by a documented record, his consultancy services to Powertel face serious allegations some of which have been previously raised by some sections of the media.
“The allegations are that he has been a recipient of inflated consultancy fees and that he has been an undeserving beneficiary of the corruption of tender procedures by the recently dissolved Powertel board. Powertel falls under the ministry of Energy and Power Development.”
Prof Moyo added: “In particular and of great concern to the ministry, it has since transpired that after designing a US$25 million new strategy for Powertel, the recently dissolved Powertel board proceeded to hire Dr Magaya to implement his own design despite the fact that the State Procurement Board had specifically disqualified his company from participating in the tender on grounds that he was conflicted as the designer of the strategy which was the subject of the tender.
“Accordingly, and not withstanding Dr Magaya’s vast experience and impeccable professional background which stood him in good stead to serve on the new ZBC board, the ministry is unable to retain him as a member and chairman of the board given that the allegations he faces at Powertel precisely echo the rot that has bedevilled ZBC.
“The challenges in parastatals or state enterprises require zero tolerance to corruption in all its manifestations.”
Fr Munyoro, under the auspices of Silveira House, initiated and led community initiatives that impact on the youth and the greater society through the media.
Prof Moyo said the vacancy created by the elevation of Fr Munyoro had been filled by Zimbabwe’s retired diplomat to the United States of America and South Africa, Mr Pritchard Zhou.
He holds an MA in Psychology from the University of Zambia and his research interests included multimedia and society.