EDITORIAL COMMENT : Safety, security of corruption busters key

Source: EDITORIAL COMMENT : Safety, security of corruption busters key | The Herald October 4, 2019

EDITORIAL COMMENT : Safety, security of corruption busters key

This week we carried a disturbing report indicating that the leadership of the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) was receiving death threats.

It is not surprising that the people involved in fighting corruption and ending crime would find themselves in such unenviable circumstances.

What we have learnt from the revelations is that the criminal enterprise of the dark forces of the underground are alive and well.

They are ready to fight to the bitter end.

This means two things: first, Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo and her team are doing a wonderful job of fighting the evil called corruption that the dark underworld has been shaken.

This is so because the anti-graft body has teeth, which President Mnangagwa gave to the body after years of toothless barking.

We have seen a number of high-profile cases being prosecuted, and we are told that there are scores of others waiting in line. Criminals are rattled, and this has led them to consider pre-emptive strikes on the lives of persons involved in fighting the evil practice.

In the coming days and months, we can authoritatively predict that there are going to be some revelations about corruption in this country.

We anticipate that this will define the whole complexion of the fight against corruption, as one of the key pillars of President Mnangagwa’s Second Republic.

This leads to the second of the two important things observed supra.

Zimbabwe’s capacity to fight graft, within the whole chain will need to be strengthened to ensure that there is success in the fight against corruption.

It will thus be prudent to ensure the security of the persons who are the public faces in the fight against corruption such as ZACC commissioners and officials.

The same protection should be extended to prosecutors, magistrates and judges, who may be harmed in the execution of their duties.

That sounds a bit scary. However, it is what it is, a fight of good and evil.

Corruption busters should be accorded requisite security at work and in their homes, the benefits enjoyed so far by judges or other high profile Government officials.

Anti-graft crusaders’ job is risky and they deserve State protection in the form of police or military guards.

Foot soldiers who do the actual investigations must also get some form of protection. While it may be burdensome on the understaffed police to guard each of the investigators, Government must come up with other measures to protect them against thugs sponsored by corruption cartels.

At least decent State accommodation for the investigators will go a long way ensuring their security.

Police officers and soldiers stay in camps, but someone investigating powerful politicians and other high-profile figures lodges at Matapi hostels in Mbare.

It is also sad to note that the same investigators take the risk of hiking to and from work daily, exposing them to thugs who may attack them over work-related issues.

Security must be intensified at ZACC offices countrywide to ensure the officers’ safety because their job is all about making enemies on a daily basis.

Now that Government has declared war on corrupt elements of the society, it must be prepared to invest in the fight against the vice.

Officers holding such sensitive and important offices deserve to be well taken care of and to avoid mingling or being corrupted by thugs of the underworld.

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