via ‘Lack of political will stalls graft fight’ – DailyNews Live Farayi Machamire • 15 April 2016
HARARE – Zimbabwe’s hopes of making significant strides towards eradicating corruption lie in setting up performance-based corruption targets, former Chimanimani Zanu PF MP Michael Mataure has said.
Mataure said although the country has enough laws to combat corruption there is no political will to deal with the scourge.
“We are good at producing documents, analysis . . . but short on action,” Mataure said during a Transparency International Zimbabwe’s (TIZ) National Anti-Corruption Policy Dialogue Workshop yesterday.
“It’s not about pieces of legislation, we have enough of those, but it’s about putting in place performance targets to say by this time we should reduce corruption by this percentage. We need a consented effort.”
Public officials have been exposed by the auditor-general for engaging in mismanagement of public funds but the culprits continue to enjoy the pleasures of their loot.
Recently, officials from the Grain Marketing Board and the District Development Fund were accused of diverting funds allocated to them by government for the distribution of food aid to the needy for their own use.
At the meeting, judiciary service officers rebuffed claims they are not doing enough to lock up corrupt officials who continue to walk scot-free despite overwhelming evidence of graft against them.
Harare provincial magistrate Vakai Chikwekwe said it was unfair to expect them to be the judge, prosecutors and complainants.
“We have had high-profile cases. We have had some convictions that have taken place one of which was Fredrik Shava . . . those were very high-profile cases. What transpired thereafter was not within the confines of the judiciary but it was presidential pardon,” Chikwekwe said.
Shava was one of the top government officials who was implicated in the famous Willogate scandal of 1988-9.
“ . . . sometimes you find there are a lot of high-profile cases that may come to court but they are poorly-investigated. And they usually fall by the wayside.”
Chikwekwe said it was the duty of every Zimbabwean to combat corruption saying the public was as much to blame for the scourge that has afflicted almost every sector in Zimbabwe.
Speaking at the same occasion, Transparent International Zimbabwe executive director Mary-Jane Ncube said the country needed multi-stakeholder collaboration in the fight against corruption.
Zimbabwe is ranked joint 163rd out of 176 countries in the 2012 Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index.