Parliamentarians need to have a better understanding of corruption to craft appropriate pieces of legislations that will help end the scourge.
To this end, parliamentarians under the African Parliamentary Network Against Corruption (APNAC) will this month sign two Memoranda of Understanding with the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZAAC) and Transparency International Zimbabwe (TIZ) to create strategic alliances that will open up discussions around the laws needed to fight corruption.
Speaking at a TIZ coordinated training workshop for legislators on corruption held in Mutare on Friday, APNAC Zimbabwe chapter chairperson Priscilla Misihairambwi said members of Parliament should be at the forefront of fighting corruption and the training received during the two-day workshop would buttress their role and help them understand complex issues surrounding corruption.
“We have decided that as the legislative arm, we need to engage very seriously with ZACC. We will sign a MoU with ZACC and one with Transparency International who are part of civic society working on issue to do with corruption,” she said.
“During this workshop, we have members of APNAC as well as chairpersons of Parliamentary portfolio committees because we want to influence the architecture of Parliament to engage in issues of corruption so that they also play a role in pushing the anti-corruption agenda in parliament and in their respective committees.”
She said the MoUs would put into perspective legislation such as the whistleblower policy as well as finding out the challenges within the Judiciary system that might be making it difficult for corruption cases to be concluded within the shortest possible time.
TIZ executive director Mrs Muchaneta Mundopa said after the training, legislators are expected to be able to engage in robust debate on how they can fight corruption.
She said they should also articulate corruption issues with ease and have the knowledge that is required to come up with precise pieces of legislation or institutional frameworks.
“Parliament plays a very critical role in terms of fighting corruption. We decided to engage APNAC and the chairpersons of specific parliamentary portfolio committees to strengthen their capacity to have an understanding of what corruption is, how it’s damaging the economy and the societal values at large and how they can then play a role in eradicating the corruption,” she said.
Mberengwa North legislator Tafanana Zhou said parliamentarians need to unite to be able to play their part in the fight against corruption.
He said the MoU with ZACC was a good move as it would help them fulfil their oversight role.
Parliamentary portfolio committee on foreign Affairs Cde Kindness Paradza said they were committed to helping achieve President Mnangagwa’s call for zero tolerance to corruption.
“As Parliament we are assisting the Government and anti-corruption organs to have a corruption free society. We will also work with all law enforcement agencies to deal with the scourge of corruption which has destroyed our economy,” he said.