Murerwa should not ignore call to investigate Fidelity


Former financial advisor to Fidelity Life Assurance, Chief Bango, says the company must be investigated because it paid out hefty packages to workers who opted for voluntary retirement in February.

Acting chief executive Solomon Tembo says Chief Bango’s allegations are malicious and irresponsible. The packages were above board and were approved by the board of directors. The question now is: who should the public believe?

For one, Chief Bango ought to know more if he indeed was the company’s financial advisor. After all at the time of the package, Tembo was working at the parent company, the Zimbabwe Reinsurance Company.

What should even be more worrying is that if the downsizing was meant to improve the efficiency of the company, why did the chief executive Claudius Chonzi leave, as Chief Bango said, before his downsized structure could operate?

If the programme went on well, why was it necessary to bring someone down from the parent company rather than take someone from within Fidelity? People talk and in Harare, half the time they are right.

Some of the junior employees who left Fidelity are sitting pretty. They are not even looking for jobs and in Harare this speaks volumes. The package was just too good to turn down.

One worker even told The Insider: “I could not turn this offer down because after 10 years I was not sure the company would survive after this. And right now, I cannot think of looking for another job as I will not get as senior a position as I had at Fidelity.”

In fact, there are even reports that some of those who were given packages are back at work, this time either as consultants or part-timers.

With the collapse of the United Merchant Bank, which people started whispering about as early as 1996, Finance Minister Herbert Murerwa ought to listen to Chief Bango. It is better to investigate and prove Chief Bango wrong than to brush him off and see another financially related company collapse. The damage to the country would just be too great.


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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