Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC), Gweru (0712899753) and Harare (0719529483)
Kwekwe District Commanding Police (Dispol), Kwekwe (0772278020)
Cc: Acting Town Clerk, City of Kwekwe, Kwekwe (0773582453)
Cc: Audit Manager, City of Kwekwe, Kwekwe (0772814046)
Cc: Head of Municipal Police, City of Kwekwe, Kwekwe (0773530505)
FROM: Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA)
Represented by Mr. Alouis Munyaradzi Chaumba (Acting Regional Director) (0773302830)
DATE: 13 November 2020
RE: PLEA FOR ZACC AND ZRP INTERVENTION: ALLEGED CORRUPTION BY KWEKWE MUNICIPAL POLICE AND REPRISALS AGAINST INDIVIDUALS REPORTING THE CORRUPTION THEREOF
The case of Mr. Anyway Chikwiriro who reported corruption against the City of Kwekwe’s municipal police is being escalated to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) and the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) because of the following reasons:
It was reported to the management of the City of Kwekwe but no action has been taken against the alleged culprits;
Instead, the complainant is facing increasing reprisals including being handicuffed by members of the municipal police;
The complainant has already been threatened to withdraw the report made in exchange for receiving his goods that were confiscated;
Members of the municipal police previously fingered and arrested of corruption are still at work and did not receive any sanctions for being involved in corruption.
More to the point, on the 11th of November 2020, the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) received a report of corruption between vendors and the City of Kwekwe’s municipal police. It is alleged that bribes are paid as follows:
1. Vendors working from undesignated areas contribute US$1 per person to the municipal police for them to give a blind eye to illegal vending activities. Affected vendors work from areas around PG Complex, PicknPay supermarket, TM Supermarket, Spar Supermarket, and OK Supermarket. The money is handed over to known police officers some of whom have been named and shamed an affidavit by Anyway Chikwiriro;
2. Furthermore, vendors pay US$5 to recover confiscated goods. Receipts are not issued after the payments thereof.
B. NATURE OF THE COMPLAINT
On the 11th of November 2020, Mr. Anyway Chikwiriro deposed an affidavit complaining of the same. The affidavit thereof, is hereby quoted below
“I, the undersigned ANYWAY CHIKWIRIRO, Identification Number 71-153928A-27, residing at 33/1, MBIZO TOWNSHIP, KWEKWE, reachable on 0771891555, do hereby make oath and state as follows:
1. The information stated below is to the best of my knowledge and belief true and correct;
2. I am deposing this Affidavit to complain against the conduct of City of Kwekwe’s municipal police officers, particularly officers nicknamed as ‘Mudizidzi’, ‘Give’ and ‘Mawachi’ who have gained notoriety for soliciting bribes from vendors and punishing all those refusing to pay bribes
3. The following is the chronology of events that happened:
a. On the 9th of November 2020, a Municipal Police officer nicknamed ‘Mudzidzi’ in the company of ‘Mawachi’ confiscated the goods I have been selling since we had not paid them the usual bribes of US$1 paid each day by each vendor
b. On the 10th of November 2020, Mudzidzi came again and took more goods stating that he wanted to make my life miserable since I had refused to pay him and also that he wanted to punish me for having exposed corruption by the municipal police;
4. I would to submit that most of the vendors operating close to PG Complex contribute bribe money of US$1 on a daily basis. The following are few examples:
a. On Saturday 7 November 2020, myself and colleagues contributed US$1 per person and gave it to Mawachi in the company of a certain lady whose name I do not know
b. On the same day Saturday 7 November 2020, another police officer known as ‘Give’ took my goods but returned them when I paid him US$5. I was not given any receipt as proof of payment
c. There are several other times when we paid Mudzidzi and the rest of the vendors in the area are aware of this practice.
d. During the month of November 2020, I have always been arrested and forced to pay US$5. I did not get receipts for all payments made.
5. I am deposing this Affidavit asking the management of the City of Kwekwe to facilitate the return of my goods confiscated by the municipal police. Furthermore, I hereby request that the management of the police investigates this matter. “
C. ESCALATION OF THE COMPLAINT TO THE ACTING TOWN CLERK
Upon receipt of the complaint thereof, ACT-SA escalated the same to the Acting Town Secretary who promptly responded and asked the complainant to meet the Internal Audit Manager of the City of Kwekwe.
D. MEETING BETWEEN THE COMPLAINANT AND THE AUDIT MANAGER OF THE CITY OF KWEKWE
The Complainant reported that the Audit Manager alerted the senior management of the Municipal Police who invited the complainant for a meeting.
E. MEETING BETWEEN THE COMPLAINANT AND MR. ZUNGUZA AND ONE OFFICER KNOWN AS MILLION ON 12 NOVEMBER 2020
The Complainant indicated that he only received good reception from the Head of the Municipal police (Mr. Zuva) whilst the rest threatened him for reporting the corruption thereof. Two officers Zunguza and Million threatened and asked him to withdraw the report he had made in exchange for receiving goods that the municipal police had confiscated. He was told to depose an affidavit which he refused to do.
F. DETENTION AND ARREST OF THE COMPLAINANT BY THE MUNICIPAL POLICE
On the 13th of November 2020 whilst the complainant was having a meeting with Mr. Zuva who is the Head of Municipal police, Mr. Zunguza and 2 other officers came and handicuffed the complainant . The complainant stated that he was being arrested for reporting corruption against the municipal police. It is alleged that Zunguza threatened that the complainant must go to jail since he had tarnished the name of the police. Zunguza also allegedly indicated that they wanted to take him to their lawyer whilst in handicuffs, to depose an affidavit withdrawing the matter. After being arrested, the complainant called ACT-SA and the City of Kwekwe’s Audit Manager. The Audit Manager called Mr. Zuva who ordered that his juniors remove the handicuffs.
G. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The report brought by Mr. Anyway Chikwiriro provides leads to the possible existence of a syndicate within the rank and file of the municipal police which exorts bribes from the micro, small to medium enterprises in Kwekwe. The affidavit deposed by Mr. Anyway Chikwiriro named and shamed ‘Give’, ‘Mawachi’ and ‘Mudzidzi’ but other officers within the rank and file of the municipal police rallied against the complainant as evidenced through developments that took place on the 12th and 13th of November 2020. It is not clear why the complainant ended up being handicuffed when he had done a good job of exposing corruption. That said, ACT-SA is calling upon the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) and the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) to intervene and investigate this matter. Mr. Anyway Chikwiriro is facing increasing reprisals for reporting corruption and this has put his life in great danger and hence this request for ZACC and ZRP intervention.