Zimbabwe: Cosmas Nkomo

Date: July 13, 2018
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“The Bible says God created man,not man but MEN”.

I am the Treasurer for Umguza Rural District Council. I associate with budgetary, revenue collection, payments and accounting. On Budgetary, I prepare Council budgets after holding consultation meetings with the Communities especially women and youths while most will be at work and because they are the direct users or beneficiaries of Council services. Again on revenue collection, I produce bills for rates and services rendered, collect the revenue from various sources. I process and pay for supplies and services rendered to Council by other organisations and individuals. I prepare and produce periodic financial report and annual financial account of Council. On top of that,  I am the Gender focal person for the finance department of Council.

I trained as an accountant through the Chartered Institute of Secretaries and Administrators of Zimbabwe in 1990’s and studied for Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) in 2000’s. I worked for the Posts and Telecommunications Corporation as an Executive officer in charge of sales and services before being elevated to an auditor and eventually an audit team leader before joining the Council as Treasurer in 2008. As an audit team leader I was in charge of a team of four auditors, three security and ten loss control officers looking after the Postal operations in the southern region of the country.

After joining Council I spear headed the computerisation of the Councils accounting system. The computerization program has now spread to other Council departments. The computerisation has enabled council to produce financial statements timeously and be one of the very few Councils that are up to date statutory audits.

At the introduction of the multi-currency system in the Zimbabwean economy I initiated a recapitalization process in council. This saw council buy roads construction equipment which includes a motorized grader, excavator, three tipper trucks and a 15000 litre motorized water tanker from the Republic of South Africa. I have also seen to it that construction of various schools and clinics are adequately funded and through this two clinics and two schools have been completed.

After the 2013 general elections I led a training team that trained newly elected councillors in three local authorities in Matabeleland South. In 2014 when the government introduced the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZIM ASSET) I trained councillors and council officials from all ten local authorities in Matabeleland North. Again in 2015 when the government introduced performance management in councils, I trained the same councillors and council officers in Integrated Results based management.

As an individual I believe in a community where men and women have equal opportunities, rights, obligations and respect for each other. I am at bringing economic empowerment to the community through training and infrastructural development so that both sexes will be able to benefit. I am being driven by inequalities that are there in all our key areas. I am committed to gender issues because I want to drive change by offering equal training access to resources to both males and females. I  also want to improve the lives of the girl child so that school drop outs and vulnerability to deadly diseases such as HIV/AIDS can be reduced.  

As a gender champion, I train councillors and officers from local authorities. I am also responsible for budgeting making it gender sensitive. I champion gender in and outside council that I will improve the lives of most girl children making them less vulnerable to patriarchal societies which suppress their freedom to success. Through awareness campaigns and trainings I ensure that gender is praised by all members of finance committee in which I lead in council, make them embed it even in their household levels.

Championing gender has made a huge change in my life. There has been a great change towards attitudes and behavioural change in issues that concerns gender. Men are now also able to recognise a woman in the leadership of the council. I have learnt a lot of lessons through changes of attitudes in Gender Based Violence Survivors, lives of children and lives of care workers. Women have also been empowered and they now constitute some of the key areas in all levels. I’m looking forward to train beef farmers in the near future. To guide them on how to become giants in the meat industry. I also look forward in building shelter for pregnant women who will be waiting for their delivery dates.