Zimbabwe’s Members of Parliament today rejected the proposed appointment of Industrial Development Corporation boss Mike Ndudzo as Auditor General to replace the popular Mildred Chiri.
MPs across the political divide told Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa that Ndudzo was a failure in his current job where for 26 years he has presided over the vast, loss-making state-owned enterprise with interests spanning from car assembly, fertiliser, mining to textiles.
“We must have due process in terms of allowing Parliament, in this instance the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to be consulted because we have a situation where the proposal of Ndudzo has had reactions and insinuations that Chiri has been fired,” said Innocent Gonese, the chief whip of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.
He said since section 310 (1) of the constitution stipulates that the AG is appointed by the President with the approval of Parliament, the correct procedure would be for Chinamasa to first consult the Public Accounts Committee, in which the AG is a member.
“The AG is secretary to the PAC and we cannot perform without the AG and for the minister to come here with the proposal (to replace the AG) without having consulted PAC with reference to the curriculum vitae of Ndudzo is wrong. We are saying Chinamasa is jumping the gun and we do not want to discuss Ndudzo until he goes before the PAC.”
Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda demanded to know if Chiri had been fired or had resigned.
Chinamasa said Chiri’s term of office had expired 18 months ago although she had been handed a fresh six-year term in 2013.
“Let me put the record straight and say that Chiri has not been fired. She was appointed to her current position as AG in 2004 and her 12-year term expired in February last year. I sought legal advice on whether or not she was eligible for another term and was advised by lawyers that she was eligible,” Chinamasa said.
Chiri then agreed to continue for another term as AG but later sent a text message that she does not wish to continue in the role, he added.
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