Zimbabwe is putting in place appropriate legislative and institutional arrangements to facilitate greater cooperation with other sates in the event of requests for mutual legal assistance, extradition and return of stolen assets, President Mnangagwa has said.
He said this yesterday during a virtual United Nations Special Session of the General Assembly on challenges and measures to prevent and combat corruption and strengthen international cooperation.
This comes as the country is also prioritising joint investigation schemes enhancement and asset recovery, among others, with regional countries to curb illicit financial flows, which prejudice Africa of an estimated US$80 billion per year. President Mnangagwa said he was encouraged that the Political Declaration to be adopted at the end of the Special Session of the General Assembly, was elaborate on the need to stop the increasing levels of illicit financial flows.
“We welcome the declaration’s increased focus on the recovery and return of confiscated assets. In this regard, let me add that the fight against illicit financial flows cannot be won without full cooperation between both the source and receiving states on these illicit finances,” he said.
As a state party to the UN Convention against Corruption and a member of various regional conventions and protocols on corruption, Zimbabwe is fully aware that the eradication of corruption is one of the key preconditions for achieving sustainable economic growth and prosperity.
“The Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) and National Prosecuting Authority are both now fully operational while an Anti-Money Laundering Act is now in force. The implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy for the period 2020-2024, is in full swing,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said the strategy sought to strengthen the structures for deterrence, detection, adherence and enforcement of the integrity management of obligations across sectors.
“It further protects whistle-blowers and victims of corruption. In addition, Zimbabwe has established specialised courts for handling corruption and economic crimes throughout the country. To augment these efforts, my administration set up a special anti-corruption unit to assist the anti-corruption commission in the prosecution of high profile cases.
“Under the asset recovery strategy, the Asset Recovery Unit traces and recovers assets both within and outside our borders. My country continues to deploy ICTs to enhance efficiencies and to reduce human interference in service delivery which should also help combat corruption,” he said.
The President said his administration was also re-orienting all sectors of the economy including public-private and non-governmental institutions towards the culture of honesty, accountability and transparency.
He added that Zimbabwe was putting in place appropriate legislative and institutional arrangements to facilitate greater cooperation from other State parties in the event of requests for mutual legal assistance, extradition and return of stolen assets.
The Special Session is expected to provide an opportunity to stir political will of governments and the international community in advancing the fight against corruption.
Governments will be able to take stock of global efforts and commitments and identify solutions to common challenges in preventing and combating corruption.