CHRA boss jettisoned over alleged funds abuse

07 Apr, 2019 - 00:04 0 Views

The Sunday Mail

Sunday Mail Reporter

The unceremonious departure of Combined Harare Residents Association (CHRA)’s chief executive officer Mr Mfundo Mlilo continues to feed market rumour that he was jettisoned over allegations of gross mismanagement and embezzling funds amounting to US$1,5 million.

Mr Mlilo reportedly failed to satisfactorily account for donor funds.

Sources said he allegedly used some of the funds to pamper himself at a local hotel and to bankroll the campaign of MDC-Alliance Member of Parliament for Harare West Joana Mamombe during last year’s harmonised elections.

“He misappropriated funds amounting to US$1,5 million and failed to account for his stay at a hotel in Harare.

“Some of funds were channelled to Joanna Mamombe for her campaign,” a close source said.

However, Mr Mlilo told The Sunday Mail he has resigned to focus on personal business.

He elected not to comment on allegations of embezzling US$1,5 million from the non-governmental organisation, which is considered an umbrella organisation for Harare residents.

CHRA acting board chairperson Ms Beatrice Ngwenya, however, is fighting in his corner.

“Firstly, CHRA has never received such a huge amount of funding since its inception in 1999. Secondly, CHRA completed its 2018 annual audits in February 2019 and all the reports are good.

“CHRA has always been accountable to its partners and all its project funds have been audited. Thirdly, Mfundo Mlilo resigned from the association as of the March 1 2019 and his personal life, social and political activities have nothing to do with CHRA.”

MP Mamombe could not be reached for comment by the time of going to print.

NGOs have of late come under the spotlight for abusing donor funds.

Last year, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) had to withdraw funding from several NGOs in Zimbabwe after an audit unearthed massive embezzlement of funds at Counselling Services Unit (CSU), Elections Resource Centre and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights).

A similar saga also rocked Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) in 2014 after an adverse audit report implicated the then director, McDonald Lewanika, in the misuse of the organisation’s funds, among other issues.

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