Auditor General Mildred Chiri has revealed that the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) paid Powertel $9 646, 318 as commission for selling prepaid electricity to wholesalers. Chiri said that ZETDC could have sold the prepaid electricity to wholesalers itself.
The auditor general’s report also revealed that some meters were last read in 1984. In her report she recommended that ZETDC should sell the prepaid electricity itself as it has the capacity to do so and that meters should be read at least once every three months. Said Chiri:
The economic rationale of selling through Powertel is not clear as the company has a capacity to sell directly to wholesalers. This eliminates commission paid to Powertel and also improves efficiency of the network and the total amount paid during the year was $9 646, 318.
The company’s policy requires that all meters should have actual readings taken at least once in three months. Some customers, however, had actual meter readings last recorded some years back, for example in 1984, 1991 and 2005. Other clients’ readings took up to 982 days before they were taken.
The report states that 191 162 meters have not been read for over one year, while 15 782 have not been read in two years, 7 372 (three years), 2 795 (four years), 531 (five years) and 1 861 (over five years).