Institute of Architects Zimbabwe (IAZ) has been implicated in a US$20 million corruption scandal.
This comes after Cassava Smartech contracted the Institute of Architects Zimbabwe (IAZ) to run its architectural design competition whose results are alleged to have been manipulated.
Local architects who had submitted proposed designs for the Cassava headquarters which is to be built at Borrowdale Racecourse accuse IAZ president, Emile Murwira, of manipulating the process in favour of an inferior proposal belonging to his “good friend” and former classmate, Brian Muzwembiri.
Speaking to a local publication, Kukurigo, an anonymous architect who participated in the competition said:
In previous instances, design competitions exhibit all submitted works at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe for a few weeks. In this case, the work has been unavailable for viewing by the public because Murwira knows that what he has done is embarrassing and cannot be sustained.
Kukurigo further reports that Murwira allegedly misled the IAZ board into thinking that the competition was to be Wholly refereed by Cassava. Meanwhile, Cassava has reportedly refuted the claims.
Murwira is said to have told attendees at the competition award ceremony held at Cresta Lodge Msasa last Thursday that Zimbabwean technical consultants were identified in consultation with the South Africa Council for the Architecture Profession (SACAP).
Murwira’s version of the story has however been dismissed by local architects who claim that Murwira handpicked the consultants.
Kukurigo further reports that Murwira declined to comment on the matter saying he had not been cleared to speak to the press.
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