Energy and Power Development Minister, Fortune Chasi has suspended ZESA Holdings executive chairperson, Dr Sydney Gata and he and will not be allowed to enter the power utility’s headquarters.
Minister Chasi revealed that Dr Gata would be barred from Zesa premises until due processes have been completed.
“Our initial stance as Government was to observe corporate governance and give the board an opportunity to deal with the matter. This entailed giving the board time to investigate the serious allegations against Dr Gata.
“But alas! He (Dr Gata) decided to lock the board out of Zesa premises. He took the view that no board meetings would take place as a way to stall progress. He then proceeded to bar the board entry into Zesa premises and ordered security to lock them out,”
Gata is said to have refused to accept the letter of suspension he had been initially served with and instead proceeded to suspend the entire board as if he still had the powers to do so.
Minister Chasi said they’re working to bring normalcy to Zesa.
“This will include barring Dr Gata from Zesa for a defined period to allow the investigations to happen. We want to be very procedural and need to.
Although he suspended Gata, he said he is still presumed innocent, until proven guilty but his actions have left a lot to be desired.
Dr Gata is being accused of abusing the power utility’s five pool vehicles, unlawfully interfering in the disciplinary hearing of a top executive and spending $10 million on Christmas parties and sending four consultants to South Africa at Zesa’s expense.
Minister Chasi has called for a thorough investigation and called the corruption accusations very worrying.
Dr Gata said the reason why he had stayed put was because his lawyers advised him to do so and told him his initial suspension was unprocedural.