The 2018 Auditor General’s Annual Report has exposed a worrying trend of lack of accountability in the majority of the state-owned enterprises, with the Central Mechanical Equipment Department (CMED) failing to record the actual mileage of hired out vehicles.

The report showed that though the CMED is a better pick among the ailing parastatals, the company is found wanting as it hires out vehicles but does not keep records of mileage to allow for charging.

The report found this anomaly as a serious breach of standard operating procedures which likely prejudices the parastatal of hundreds of millions in potential revenue.

Responding to this, CMED General Manager, Engineer Davison Mhaka said their system is user based and relies on readings provided by the user but expects the soon-to-be installed tracking record to deal with this loophole.

“We hire out most of our vehicles to ministries and we rely on the readings that they give us on a monthly basis because we do not have a tracking system to also read the mileage. We believe that the soon-to-be installed tracking system will deal with this,” said Engineer Mhaka.

The absence of an effective tracking system is a huge concern for a company that is in the transport industry and casts a huge doubt on the ability of the parastatal to monitor the entire vehicle fleet of the government as it moves to reduce unnecessary expenditure in line with the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP).