NFRA board demands human resource audit
Suspicious of some employees
The missing of 13 trucks of maize which the National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) hired has opened a can of worms, with stakeholders calling for a comprehensive audit of the institution.
A report of investigations into the issue of missing maize trucks questioned the level of incompetence of some personnel.
The report, which was presented to Parliament, questioned the way some junior and mid-level staff handled procurement processes.
Parliament called for investigations at the reserve agency after going through the report
Now, the board of NFRA itself has asked the Department of Human Resources Management and Development (DHRMD) to conduct a human resource audit at the institution.
Some board officials confided in The Daily Times that they are simply following recommendations made in the report that was presented to Parliament.
They further said the objective of the audit is to authenticate the legality and legitimacy of each recruitment done before the current board was instituted.
According to the report that was presented to Parliament, any anomalies will be rectified.
“…and that all anomalies detected through this exercise should be rectified. The board also resolved that Comptroller of Statutory Corporations should be approached to assist in engaging DHRMD and administration in carrying out this exercise,” the report reads.
NFRA Board Chairperson Denis Kalekeni told Parliament recently that the Internal Procurement and Disposal Committee displayed elements of incompetence in reviewing bid documents from Smolet Kachere, owner of Kachere Agricultural Limited, who was contracted to transport maize from the Northern Region to Kanengo in Lilongwe.
The board resolved to dissolve the committee.
He said the new committee would be instituted after its members undergo an orientation with Public Procurement and Disposal of Assets (PPDA) or any other legally instituted body on matters of procurement.
However, DHRMD spokesperson Ken Mtonga said Tuesday that the communication, if any, from NFRA has not reached them.
“As we speak, we don’t have any communication to that effect,” he said.
NFRA instituted the investigation after reports emerged that 13 trucks loaded with maize that Kachere was contracted to deliver to Kanengo depots went missing in transit to Kanengo silos in Lilongwe.
The outcome of the investigation led to the suspension of two management employees which included Chief Executive Officer Brenda Kayongo and acting Director of Operations Symon Banda.
Police recovered 600 bags of maize and arrested 15 people in connection with the matter.