Mugabe must act on corruption

via Mugabe must act on corruption – DailyNews Live  2 September 2014 by Conrad Nyamutata

HARARE – President Robert Mugabe would have the Chinese believe he is firm about corruption. Ministers who engage in corrupt activities face jail, he told Guangdong TV during his recent visit to China last week.

However, Mugabe’s pronouncements stand in stark contrast to his record and attitude towards corruption among his ministers.

Perhaps the irony of it all is that while he claimed disdain towards corruption in China, his emissary (ambassador) in that country, Frederick Shava, a former minister, was involved in one of the major scandals in Zimbabwe — Willowgate.

While Mugabe instituted an inquiry, the Sandura Commission, after Willowgate, the findings only led to the resignations of ministers, and a suicide, not dismissals.

Others involved, including Callistus Ndlovu, Enos Nkala and Dzingai Mutumbuka, all went scot-free. Maurice Nyagumbo took his own life and was declared a national hero.

This record does not evince the bullish claims that ministers engaged in graft in Zimbabwe face jail. It shows, instead, that corrupt ministers either escape censure and punishment or, worse still, are rewarded.

The Willowgate scandal sticks out as only one early example of Mugabe’s reticence towards elite corruption.

Since then, numerous scams involving the elite have gone unpunished.

The commonly cited include the ZRP Santana Scandal (1989), War Victims Compensation Scandal (1994), GMB Grain Scandal (1995), VIP Housing Scandal (1996), Boka Banking Scandal (1998), Zesa YTL Soltran Scandal (1998), Harare City Council Refuse Tender Scandal (1998), Housing Loan Scandal (1999) and Noczim Scandal (1999)

The others are: the DRC timber and diamond UN reported scandals (1999), GMB Scandal (1999), ministry of water and rural development Chinese tender scandal (1999), Harare Airport Scandal (2001), pillaging and milking of Ziscosteel (2005-8), pillaging of diamonds in Chiadzwa (2006-present) and the Airport Road Scandal (2008-2014).

In March last year, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) officers, armed with High Court papers, wanted to search for documents in the offices of the National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board (Nieeb), Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) and the Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara).

Officers and ministers involved with these bodies were suspected of impropriety.

Despite legal authorisation, Zacc was barred from searching the offices.

Given the history of elite corruption and prevention of lawful pursuit against it, Mugabe’s purported disdain towards official malfeasance fails to stand up to scrutiny.

Not a single minister has even been questioned, let alone arrested despite the suspicious accumulation of wealth that is grossly incongruous with their official incomes.

Speaking at a birthday party hosted by the Public Service Commission in March this year, Mugabe said a minister had demanded a bribe of $70 000 while a female legislator asked for a $50 000 facilitation fee from a potential investor.

That was the last we heard of the matter.

Zanu PF has put Zimbabwe in the premier league of corrupt countries. According to an Afrobarometer report released in November last year, Zimbabwe was third in the corruption rankings after Nigeria and Egypt.

It seems participation in the liberation struggle or association with those involved in it is the ticket to impunity.

Agents of social control and deviance are populated by the like-minded.

Zacc is only a window-dressing ruse that camouflages an inherent lack of resolve to tackle the decadence.

The reason Mugabe would want to sound he was anti-corruption to his recent hosts is simple. Having signed so-called “mega” deals with the Chinese, he wanted them to believe that their money will be safe.

The Chinese have every reason to be worried.

After securing $144,4 million from China’s Eximbank for rehabilitation of waterworks, the Harare City Council diverted $8 million of the loan to buy 25 luxury vehicles without going to tender.

An investigation revealed the council did not create project bank accounts for the loan, making alleged corruption surrounding the funds difficult to trace.

Mugabe should act against corruption if he is going to enjoy the confidence of even his most loyal friends.


  • comment-avatar
    Gomogranny 8 years ago

    Ticks, sucking the blood of our dying carcass of a nation. They are parasites, that’s all. Politicians….who needs them?

  • comment-avatar
    Realist 8 years ago

    He is the most corrupt of all so he should first arrest himself and his wife

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    Panda moyo 8 years ago

    How right you are realist.the man arrests peacefully demonstrating women,pangolin poachers,facebook enthusiasts but wont say a word about corrupt for the chinese its just show.theyare as corrupt as he is

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    Charles Frizell 8 years ago

    Please people – WAKE UP

    Right from the start Mugabe has encouraged and nurtured corruption. That is his prime way of keeping his henchmen (and women) under control. Should they ever turn against him, out will come the corruption facts – and every single one of them knows it, from Mujuru and Mnangagwa on downwards through the ranks of hoodlums and thieves.

    This is a fact no one seems to want to accept, that Mugabe = Corruption, it is his means of control

  • comment-avatar
    avenger/revenger 8 years ago

    Commander in thief of whore vets

  • comment-avatar
    Tjingababili 8 years ago


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    Tinomunamataishe 8 years ago

    When will people realise that Mugabe will not and cannot stop corruption and lawlessness in Zimbabwe. He is the biggest beneficiary of corruption and it is therefore in his best interests that corruption thrives and flourishes so that he and his bootlickers are able to maintain the lifestyle they have today.

    It’s also used for political control for people in his party and therefore the benefits to him are unsurpassed.

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    Petal 8 years ago

    Biggest joke of the century “Mugabe must Act on Corruption”