EAGLESVALE HEAD IN $800K SCAM

EAGLESVALE Senior School headmaster, salaries officer and bursar appeared in court yesterday charged with embezzling over $800 000 after they encashed their leave days and awarded themselves allowances without approval of the board.

The headmaster, Naison Tirivari (60), bursar Charles Shokobishi (57) and salaries officer Cheryl Botha (52) appeared before Harare magistrate Mr Francis Mapfumo facing fraud charges. The trio was released on $1000 bail each.
 
Mr Mapfumo ordered them to report every Friday at CID Serious Frauds, surrender their passports and reside at their given addresses. They are expected back in court on October 30.
 
The complainant in the matter is Eaglesvale Senior School’s board vice-chairman Mr Willard Gonde. The prosecutor Mrs Idah Maromo alleged that sometime last year Eaglesvale Senior School’s board members held a meeting to look at the school’s financial records.
It is alleged that inconsistencies in cash-in lieu payments of leave to non-teaching and teaching staff was discovered.
 
In 2013, the board instructed the accused not to encash leave days. A forensic audit was carried out and it was established that Botha encashed her leave days.
 
It was discovered that Botha allegedly entered varying amounts on other staff members’ cash-in lieu of leave on payroll sent for authorisation. Once the authorisation was obtained from the headmaster, Botha would then alter the electronic payroll to have cash-in lieu of leave allocated back to her pay.
 
Botha allegedly effected payment through her CBZ account 008920804980033.
It is alleged that Botha overstated her bonus from 2011 to 2014 accumulating to $518 007, 58.
 
The headmaster Tirivari, who doubled as a Mathematics and Thinking Skills teacher, authorised and approved his cash in lieu of leave days amounting to $135 377, 50. He also received unapproved termly allowances amounting to $13 366 without the board’s knowledge.
 
Tirivari allegedly swindled the school of $148 743. The bursar, Shokobishi, is accused of conniving with Tirivari and received $19 903 for 225 leave days, contrary to his employment contract.
 
Eaglesvale School lost $873 840, 56 and nothing was recovered.

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