ZANU PF legislators are reportedly pushing to elbow out MDC vice president Tendai Biti as chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee for Public Accounts, Zim Morning Post has learnt.
The legislators are arguing that he is not ‘fit and proper’ for the position as he is facing corruption allegations emanating from his tenure as Finance minister in the Government of National Unity.
The Committee on Standing Rules and Orders (CSRO) appointed Biti as chairperson in 2018.
According to well-placed sources in Zanu PF, Biti’s hands are ‘dirty’ and he is not in a position to play an oversight role in government finances.
“He is being investigated by Zimbabwe Anti Corruption Commission (ZACC), so in that regard how can he be fit and proper to oversee government expenses.
“ He failed to account for US$30 million during a time when he was entrusted with the government fiscus , it’s ridiculous, ” opined a Zanu-PF legislator who preferred anonymity.
The source further revealed that Zanu PF will approach the office of the Clerk of Parliament and Speaker of Parliament to get the guidance on how to deal with the issue.
“We are going to approach the office of the Clerk of Parliament and the Speaker of Parliament to seek guidance on how to deal with this issue, “ added the source.
According to well-placed sources, Biti is under ZACC radar for allegedly instructing the National Social Security Authority (NSSA), to deposit over US$30million into two banks which have since collapsed.
The money was deposited into Interfin Merchant Bank and Patterson Timba led Renaissance Bank on separate occasions.
“Mr (James) Matiza (former NSSA general manager) claims that he was instructed by somebody at the Ministry of Finance (Mr Biti) during the government of national unity to deposit the money into the bank when it was known that the bank was distressed and was about to be closed,” the source said.
Interestingly, the former NSSA directors are also under investigation for giving themselves loans worth millions of dollars, with some of the bankers also externalising money which they allegedly bought houses in South Africa.
Major investments were also allegedly made by NSSA by using pension funds (which were lost in the process) to build Harare’s Joina City Mall.
Biti was appointed as Finance Minister in 2009 through a unity government after disputed elections between former president Robert Mugabe and late Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
Efforts to get a comment from Biti hit a snag as his mobile phone was not reachable on Tuesday.