Source: New ZACC chair spells out vision | The Herald June 1, 2019
From George Maponga in Masvingo
Newly-appointed Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) chair Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo has hit the ground running in the fight against corruption vowing, yesterday, to decisively deal with the vice in line with the expectations of the generality of Zimbabweans.
Speaking during the commissioning of a specialised Anti-Corruption Court housed at the Masvingo Magistrates’ Court here, Justice Matanda-Moyo assured the nation of a spirited fight against grand corruption by making sure all cases were thoroughly investigated and brought to court on time.
The ZACC chair was sworn in on Thursday by President Mnangagwa following the disbanding of the previous commission, which President Mnangagwa described as rotten to the core and is currently the only member of ZACC as other commissioners are still to be sworn in.
The visit to Masvingo for the commissioning of the country’s fourth Anti-Corruption Court was Justice Matanda-Moyo’s inaugural official appearance as ZACC chair.
“The invitation (to open the Masvingo Anti-Corruption Court) could not have come at a better time because I commenced my duties as the new chairperson of ZACC only yesterday (Thursday) afternoon,” she said.
“This occasion is my inaugural address to the nation of Zimbabwe, but the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission is yet to be fully constituted and we are yet to make binding decisions and be fully functional, but I am very clear on the vision that the Commission must pursue in line with our constitutional mandate as enshrined in the constitution.’’
Justice Matanda-Moyo vowed to leave no stone unturned in the investigation of corruption cases and rid the nation of the vice blamed for frustrating the country’s drive to engender economic growth.
“I am equally aware of public concerns and expectations regarding investigation and prosecution of corruption cases. The public is concerned about cases of grand corruption and everyone expects thorough investigation which results in the presentation of concrete evidence for the successful prosecution of offences.’’
“May I therefore assure you that my Commission will do everything in its power to meet the expectations of His Excellency (President Mnangagwa) and the nation at large and address these concerns,” said Justice Matanda-Moyo.
She hailed the Judicial Services Commission for moving to open specialised Anti-Corruption Courts throughout the country with such courts having already been opened in Harare, Bulawayo and Mutare on top of Masvingo.
Justice Matanda-Moyo underscored the need for all Zimbabweans to work together if the war against the scourge of corruption was to be won.
The ZACC chair urged the nation to draw lessons from challenges that have so far been encountered in the fight against corruption and use the window to chart new avenues for future battles against the pervasive vice.
She assured the nation that gone are the days when members of ZACC were found wanting on corruption themselves saying her Commission will do everything in its power to change the bad perception in the public by doing its job as per its constitutional mandate.
Giving keynote remarks at the event, Deputy Chief Justice Elizabeth Gwaunza reiterated the JSC zero tolerance on corruption particularly within the organisation’s ranks.
The Deputy Chief Justice cited the mass transfer of the entire staff at Rusape Magistrates’ Court, the arrest of a Karoi Magistrate and a Clerk of Court at the station together with the on-going trial of a Plumtree Regional Magistrate for alleged abuse of office as clear proof to Zimbabweans that JSC did not condone the vice more so within its ranks.
“The Judicial Services Commission will not tire in its efforts to encourage court users, litigants, legal practitioners and the general public to report any court official who demands or appears to act in a way that suggests that he/she wants a bribe to perform services that he/she is employed to offer,’’ she said.
Justice Gwaunza said the scourge of corruption deserved to be confronted head on to make sure President Mnangagwa and Government’s policies that seek to turnaround the economy such as the Transitional Stabilisation Programme became a success.
She said while the country had a raft of laws to help in the fight against corruption such as the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act (Chapter 9:23) and The Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act (9:24), the fight against corruption required joint effort to combat.
“Allow me to remind the public that the fight against corruption is not a soloist, but a chorus which Zimbabweans must sing in unison. The courts on their own will not be able to root out and stem corrupt activities without active public participation,” said Justice Gwaunza.
She also congratulated Justice Matanda-Moyo on her appointment as new ZACC chair and expressed confidence that she would be equal to the task.
Present at the commissioning of the Masvingo Anti-Corruption Court was JSC secretary Mr Walter Chikwanha, Senior Masvingo High Court Judge Justice Garainesu Mawadze, Zimbabwe Chiefs’ Council president Chief Fortune Charumbira and members of the local legal fraternity among others.
The setting up anti-corruption courts is in line with President Mnangagwa’s pledge during his inauguration that his administration will fight the scourge of corruption in the country.
The courts, which are being established in all the country’s 10 provinces are expected to deal expeditiously with graft cases.