Mnangagwa must match anti-graft vows with action 

Source: Mnangagwa must match anti-graft vows with action – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 27, 2017

THE vow by President Emmerson Mnangagwa during his inauguration speech on Friday to fix the economy and battle corruption which was closely associated with his predecessor Robert Mugabe’s rule could not have come at any better time.

In a nation ravaged by corruption, Mnangagwa’s warning to take a “no-nonsense approach” to the social ill is timely, but must be matched by action and not hot air.


It is a fact that corruption in Zimbabwe has become endemic within political, private and civil sectors. In fact, Zimbabwe ranks joint 163rd out of 176 countries in the 2012 Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index, ranking it alongside Equatorial Guinea.

On a scale of 0 (highly corrupt) to 10 (very clean), the Corruption Perceptions Index marked Zimbabwe 2.0. This marks an increase in corruption since 1999, when the country ranked 4.1. again, the findings of a 2000 survey commissioned by Transparency International-Zimbabwe found that Zimbabwean citizens regarded the public sector as the most corrupt in the country.

In that survey, respondents favoured the Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri-led police force as being the most corrupt, followed by political parties, Parliament/Legislature, public officials/civil servants and the Judiciary.

It is unfathomable that in 2008 according to a Transparency International official, Zimbabwe lost $5 million to corruption everyday.

With reports that Energy minister Samuel Undenge recently faced parliamentary grilling over the $5 million controversially advanced to businessman, Wicknell Chivayo, whose company, Intratek Zimbabwe, was awarded the multi-million dollar Gwanda solar project under equally contentious circumstances, it is important that Mnangagwa brings graft to a screeching halt as soon as yesterday.

We are heartened by the fact that Mnangagwa is alive to the fact that his government must focus on recovering the economy.
However, we believe the recovery requires that the public sector sheds off mischief and acts of indiscipline, which had characterised Mugabe’s patronage past.

We believe for Mnangagwa to fly, his government must not tolerate even the slightest of corrupt activities. Certain heads must roll immediately because they are known.

We are aware that certain corrupt political characters are already circling Mnangagwa so that their corrupt past can be forgiven. No, everyone must face the music regardless of whatever office they used to occupy under the Mugabe regime or

Zimbabweans heaved a sigh of relief at least to see Finance minister Ignatius Chombo having his day in court. Clearly, Chombo is not naïve, and his trial should not be perceived as political.

There are many like him in Zanu PF, who have been feasting on the ruling party’s gravy train, and it is time to sacrifice them for Mnangagwa to start on a clean slate.

Endemic corruption occurs across all State enterprises, where boards competed to feast during Mugabe’s sunset politics. While Mnangagwa has appealed to all Zimbabweans to let bygones be bygones this should not be the same with venality.

The country needs a fresh start and immediate action must be taken against the offenders — connected or not, ministers or not.

We believe those involved in sleaze in the past should not find themselves in the new administration lest that will dampen the spirit of Zimbabweans eager for change.

No doubt Mnangagwa is well-positioned to deal with the scourge now than anyone else.