Zimbabwean businessman Phillip Chiyangwa has lost up to $3 million to engineers misrepresenting contracts.
According to The Sunday Mail, Chiyangwa hired a firm, Tarcon, to develop properties that fall under his Pinnacle Hldings portfolio.
In what is a common con in Zimbabwe, a consulting engineer engaged by Pinnacle connived with Tarcon employees to inflate prices for material required for the properties. They would then purchase them for cheaper and pocket the difference.
The Zimbabwe Association of Consultancy Engineers (Zace) is investigating the matter which came to light after a Tarcon audit. Tarcon has asked the association to deregister the engineer.
Sadly what happened is not isolated and we think this corruption has led to a lot of inflated pricing of goods and services. We have heard of instances were an owner of a company even asks a supplier to inflate a price and then pockets the difference. It is common cause that in some instances if you want to get a contract you simply have to get someone on the inside who will want their cut and you are in.
Not that this isolated to Zimbabwe alone. It happens all over the world. It just sucks when it happens at home.