There is dissatisfaction coupled with growing frustrations at the Central Medical Stores Trust (CMST)following the hiring of a new acting procurement manager Sam Zuze, who is a board member of the Beautify Malawi (Beam) charity group, a brainchild of First Lady Getrude Mutharika.
Zuze, who only holds a bachelors degree in financial accounting is said to be a close relation to the First Lady.
A source close to the appointment told Nyasa Times Tuesday that it all started last December when CMST management led by CEO Feston Kaupa effected transfers meant to position well Zuze at the trust as a procurement manager.
It is not known whether Kaupa is trying to buy favours from the appointing authorities considering that his contrac tis also coming to an end within two months.
“I was one of those who were transferred at gun point but there were several others as well across the country. What is shocking is that there are several other qualified personnel within the institution who deserve the position and holds masters degree in supply chain management and members of both the Malawi Institute of Purchasing and Supply (Mips) and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (Cips),”said the source while panting with anger.
Nyasa Times understands that CMST management unceremoniously fired Mr. Maxwell Chimkokomo as head of procurement unit to pave way for Sam Zuze.
But according to a communication dated 13th February, 2015 that Nyasa Times has seen, Kaupa wrote Zuze informing him that management is pleased to appoint him as acting procurement manager (grade MS3) with effect from 16th February, 2015 “until a substantive procurement manager appointed. ”
According to another source within CMST, Zuze was given K1.8 million in fees to pursue supply chain course at MIM and CMST paid in full against the Terms and Conditions of service where provision of education loan facility to an employee is stipulated.
One of the Directors of CMST management also corroborated the furry by other staff saying CEO Kaupa had at one point acted in favour of Zuze when Human Resource Section had advised him against such a decision.
Nyasa Times has also seen the internal email from HR section to Kaupa advising him against the move.
“At the same time, I vividly remember that Mr. Maxwell Chimkokomo had one time applied for some leave days to pursue his part time studies at Chanco but was denied vehemently by the same Kaupa and was dismissed from his position yet he self sponsored using his own personal money though he struggled,” said the director who opted for anonymity.
Shockingly, CMST has advertised for the position of a procurement manager in the last edition of Malawi News, but according to another source from the HR department, “the advert is a clear gimmick to deceive us into thinking that the playing field is levelled.”
He added: “On qualification, the advert states that the ideal candidate for the position wills posses at least a bachelor’s degree in procurement and supply chain. How come then management is encouraging those who do not have a procurement qualification to apply? We suspect that the advert is not in good faith.”
The management and Board of CMST are abusing their powers in most decisions, one example being handpicking Zuze “an officer with irrelevant qualifications and experience to serve as acting procurement manager and transfers of staff at gun point.”
One of the Directors even revealed to Nyasa Times that he had objected to the appointment proposal as he saw Zuze not experienced.
“If this maladministration is not stopped, we shall have no choice but to seek redress from chief secretary to the government, the secretary for health, the secretary for human resource management and development, the director of ACB, the director of public procurement, and the ombudsman,” said one concerned staff member, writing to Nyasa Times.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :