Four held for gang rape of fourteen-year-old at party
MPILO Central Hospital executives acted as a syndicate to fraudulently bleed millions of dollars from the institution’s coffers, a recently concluded internal audit has revealed.
The audit, covering the period between January 2012 and May 2015, shows that the accounting system at one of the country’s biggest referral hospitals was virtually non-existent.
Auditors said officials abused resources and funds without accountability.
They have recommended that implicated officials should be charged separately and jointly where appropriate under the first schedule of the Health Services Regulations of 2006 and Treasury Instruction 0435 and 2404.
They also recommended that they be tried in a criminal court as well. The audit concluded that the system at Mpilo Central Hospital was very porous and accountability almost non-existent, leaving it open to abuse by officials.
The financial investigation showed there was no record of statutory treasury allocations in the last three years, although the government released millions to the hospital over the period.
The disappearance of GOZ files for 2012, 2013, and 2014 and renal register under unclear circumstances, hindered audit inspection, reads the report in The Chronicle’s possession.
The hospital, according to the records, was run without a purchase plan with unapproved suppliers sometimes given double payment for relatively expensive goods.
The executives would allegedly use money from the Health Services Fund, meant to equip the hospital, to BULAWAYO police have arrested four men, including a married nurse, who allegedly gang-raped a 14-yearold Form Two girl at a party.
The incident happened last week on Thursday at a house in Barbourfields suburb.
Sources said the suspects, aged 24, 26, 27 and the 37-year-old nurse, took turns to rape the teenager, who is a pupil at Eveline Girls High School, after host lavish meetings at hotels for the tender and buying committees.
Sources from the Ministry of Health and Child Care yesterday said the Health Service Board (HSB), on Tuesday formally charged four executives who were suspended in April to pave way for the audit.
More officials, the sources said, will be charged during the course of this month.
“An official from the central buying unit, Hebron Mutema, has been added to the list of officials accused of fraudulent behaviour and abuse of office,” said a intoxicating her.
The suspects cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim.
The source said the 37-year-old married nurse is stationed at Mpilo Central Hospital.
Acting police spokesperson for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province, Assistant Inspector Abednico Ncube said the four are assisting police with investigations.
“We’re holding four men in connection with the rape of a juvenile. We can’t disclose their names to protect the minor,” said Asst Insp Ncube. source, who cannot be named for professional reasons.
Mutema allegedly connived with other officials to facilitate double payment to suppliers.
He, it is alleged, would send cash and an RTGS to pay the same supplier for the same goods, said the source.
The four suspended executives, the source said, have been formally charged with a total of 20 counts of misconduct and abuse of office.
Operations director, Regina Duduza Moyo, is facing 11 counts. Mxolisi Sibanda, the chairperson of the central buying unit, is facing five, finance director,
He said the four first got the 14-year-old girl drunk before raping her.
“They gave the girl alcohol at the party after she had been invited by one of her friends. The four then took the teenager to a secluded room where they took turns to rape her,” said the acting police spokesperson for Bulawayo.
Asst Insp Ncube appealed to youths to desist from taking alcoholic beverages and other intoxicating substances as they will be exposed to abuse.
“We want to urge teenagers not to participate in beer drinking parties. These activities destroy lives and Charles Govo, has one count and Dr Lawrence Mantiziba three, said the source without giving further details.
The hospital’s board chairperson, Chelesile MoyoNcube, said the internal audit had unearthed a hotbed of corruption.
“We’ve been advised more people will be charged. The audit has revealed more serious fraud than the initial investigation done by PNA Accountants,” said Moyo-Ncube. expose them to all forms of abuse,” he said.
Recent police statistics reveal that 56 percent of rape cases in Bulawayo involve minors.
In the first six months of the year 136 rape cases were recorded in the city.
Police said of the 136 cases, 75 of them involved minor children.
This year’s statistics reveal a 15 percent decrease compared to last year. Between January and June last year, the city recorded 160 cases compared to 136 cases during the same period this year.
Asst Insp Ncube said although the cases decreased, the figures were still high and of concern as crime needs to be eradicated completely.
“We hope to witness a further decrease in rape cases. As police, we envisage a crime free society. Parents shouldn’t leave their children in the custody of male relatives as we’ve noted that most cases of child abuse involve relatives,” he said.
Police have repeatedly called on parents to play a leading role in ensuring the safety of their children. The police said they could not successfully deal with the wayward behaviour of children without the support of parents.
Lawrence Mantiziba Mpilo Central Hospital in Bulawayo