Mugabe must act on corruption

via Mugabe must act on corruption – DailyNews Live by Conrad Nyamutata  14 JANUARY 2014

One of the puzzles of our post-independence is the contradiction between the material wealth of our ministers and public officials on the one hand, and the salaries they earn on the other.

Some of these people — genuine war veterans, that is — left the battlefield, demobilisation camps or exile with nothing.

A number of the senior figures in the liberation struggle were then appointed ministers and public officials in the new government. Most have been recycled ever since.

In those days, Zanu’s ethos were captured in song:  “Zanu vanhu, vanhu iZanu” (Zanu is the people, people are Zanu).

A leadership code, adopted by Zanu PF’s congress in 1984 to keep capitalistic temptations in check, transformed mere song into a seemingly abiding philosophy of social equality.

But alas, then came the Willowgate scandal. Enos Nkala, Callistus Ndlovu, Frederick Shava, Dzingai Mutumbuka and Maurice Nyagumbo resigned in shame, the latter committing suicide, after using their positions to buy cars at knockdown prices for resale.

Since then, we have learnt Zanu is Zanu and the people are the people — the disjuncture has now manifested without any socialist pretensions of egalitarianism.

When one becomes a government minister, official, councillor, mayor or MP the transformation from rags to riches eventuates with disturbing inevitability.

Some will claim to have been genuinely enterprising. And they may have been.

But then it is hard to believe these politicians are exclusively endowed with some gene for enterprise that ordinary people do not possess. Or that when one becomes a public official his or her “gene for enterprise” suddenly manifests.

The answer lies simply in position or abuse of it.

The recent revelations by the Daily News about shady deals suspected to involve ministers would explain the abuse of position and the post-independence paradox of modest salaries on one hand and the wealth of our public officials on the other.

Ministers and public officials are using positions for personal gain.

Willowgate and the scandals that followed had already shown that the Zanu PF leadership had formulated a new and contrarian code of self-enrichment.

It is only the magnitude of the riches acquired that has been unknown.

On occasions, it has taken revelations by scorned spouses of ministers in divorce cases for Zimbabweans to learn of the extent of the wealth of some of the officials.

MPs are reluctant to reveal their assets.

Not so long ago, the Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Mudenda said the MPs would be compelled to declare assets. Only 25 out of 210 MPs have so far voluntarily complied.

Why would the MPs have to be compelled to reveal their possessions?

The abuse of office for personal gain knows no bounds.

It was reported last week, a chief had demanded $21 000 from a family of a tourist who disappeared in the Inyangani Mountains. It is most callous to try to profit from a family tragedy.

We seem to be a corrupt society — from top to bottom.

There is nothing peculiar, however, about us as a society.

Those that have branded us inherently corrupt are not paragons of virtue either.

Corruption or abuse of public office occurs in almost every society. What distinguishes us is whether we deal with it or not.

We do not seem to act resolutely against it. In Britain, for example, MPs were involved in what is dubbed the “expenses scandal.”  Denis MacShane, a former MP and Europe minister, was jailed for six months for the expenses fraud after admitting submitting 19 fake receipts amounting to £12 900.

He was the fifth MP to get a prison sentence after the expenses scam.

Compare this to how cases of the abuse of the Community Development Fund have been handled; at best lackadaisically, at worst, reluctantly.

The discovery of diamonds has provided a perfect opportunity for some to abuse position for personal gain, as the Daily News investigation showed.

It is also most puzzling that some people with known backgrounds of financial misdemeanour would be appointed to head an institution responsible for the diamond mining.

This is as good as putting Dracula in charge of the blood-bank.

President Robert Mugabe has spoken out against corruption.

But words are not enough. People want to see action.


  • comment-avatar
    Jogo Bonita 9 years ago

    Wishful thinking.

  • comment-avatar
    Ruramai 9 years ago

    Is this editor talking about the same Robert Mugabe, the architect of corruption? You got to be kidding. Mugabe thrives on corruption. He took over a corruption free country, sowed the seeds and lovingly tendered them to fruition. Now Zimbabwe proudly occupies a place in the top 20 most corrupt countries in the world.

    Without blinking an eyelid, Mugabe takes $7 million on every trip to Malaysia. Among other things, he and his family own more than 15 farms.

    With such a thick log in his own eye, he cannot point to a speck in anyone’s eye.

  • comment-avatar

    Corruption is such a menace that it seeps into the veins of nation’s most powerful, educated and public servants in all sectors of the government. Zimbabwe is no exception to this Rule! I can speak as an American and here are the facts facing right at us in the USA and its ordinary citizens known as 99%ers. An eye opening fact for all those who only blame the most persecuted and sanction country of Africa by the most powerful yet the most corrupt nation on planet earth.

    Do you believe that America is a seething cesspool of filth and corruption? If not, you might change your mind after reading this article. Sadly, the truth is that the United States is absolutely corrupt to the core. This is true from the very top of our society all the way to the very bottom. The current occupant of the White House will likely go down in history as the most corrupt president in history, and that is really saying something. Almost every single day he adds something new to his list of corrupt deeds. He is a con man that deserves to be impeached for a whole host of reasons, but that will never happen because we have a Congress that is also deeply corrupt. But it is not just our politicians that are corrupt. Even the men that are supposed to be in charge of protecting the president are corrupt. A whole bunch of them were recently discovered sleeping with prostitutes in Colombia. We also find very deep and very pervasive corruption in our financial institutions, in our judicial system, in our police departments and in our religious institutions. It is almost as if nearly the entire nation is saturated with filth and depravity. It is becoming harder and harder to find men and women of integrity, and our young people have very few positive role models to look up to. How long is our society going to be able to continue to function normally if all of this corruption gets even worse?
    The following are 25 signs that America is a seething cesspool of filth and corruption….
    #1 The men and women of the Secret Service are supposed to be the best of the best. Instead, they have become a national embarrassment. 11 members of the U.S. Secret Service are under investigation for consorting with prostitutes in Colombia. Reportedly, several of the Secret Service agents that hired prostitutes were married.
    #2 Our financial institutions are filled with cheats and liars. 2011 and 2012 have been absolutely horrible years for natural disasters in the United States. At a time when homeowners need their insurance companies more than ever, many insurance companies are systematically trying to weasel out of payouts and are trying to shift as much liability over to homeowners as possible. The following is from a recent Reuters article….
    Insurance companies are raising rates, cutting coverage, balking at some payouts and generally shifting more expense and liability to homeowners, according to reports from the industry and its critics.
    “Insurance companies have significantly and methodically decreased their financial responsibility for weather catastrophes like hurricanes, tornados and floods in recent years,” the Consumer Federation of America said in a statement after studying industry data.
    The industry concedes that it is trying to avoid getting trounced by those same punishing weather patterns.
    #3 Identity theft for the purpose of stealing tax refunds has reached epidemic proportions in America. The following is one shocking example that made the news recently up in New York….
    Authorities say a former manager at a nonprofit Long Island health agency stole the IDs of more than 50 brain injury patients to get their tax refunds.
    #4 The filth on television continues to get worse and worse. As WorldNetDaily recently reported, one new HBO series is going way over the line….
    HBO’s irreverent mockumentary “Angry Boys” is under fire for combining child actors and phallic humor, including one scene in the series’ 12th episode, where a little girl drinks from a water bottle shaped like a giant, pink penis.
    #5 All over the country, violent crime is getting worse. For example, there were 60 percent more homicides in Chicago during the first three months of 2012 than there were during the first three months of 2011.
    #6 Some of the violent crimes committed recently in cities such as Chicago appear to be absolutely senseless. The following is one recent example from the Chicago Tribune….
    A woman was shot in the face while driving in the Gresham neighborhood on the Far South Side late Wednesday.
    The woman, 38, was driving west in the 2000 block of West 84th Street about 11:30 p.m. when a light colored car pulled alongside her and someone inside fired shots, according to police News Affairs Officer Hector Alfaro.
    #7 It isn’t just in the big cities where these kinds of senseless crimes are being committed either. One crime that happened in Tulsa, Oklahoma recently is almost too horrifying to describe. The following is from a recent Daily Mail report….
    An 85-year-old woman was sexually assaulted and battered to death by a home invader who also shot her 90-year-old husband in the face with a BB gun.
    Nancy and Bob Strait, who had celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in December, were discovered by their daughter at their home in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
    Both the pensioners were rushed to hospital where Mrs Strait, who was nearly blind, died from her injuries.
    #8 The flash mob epidemic that made headlines all over the nation last year is continuing in 2012. For example, several dozen young people recently stormed into a gas station in the Portland, Oregon area and took off with whatever they could carry.
    #9 Thieves all over the nation are becoming incredibly bold. Up in New York, thieves recently stole brass plaques and bronze vases from a cemetery.
    How desperate and corrupt do you have to be to desecrate the graves of the dead?
    #10 These days thieves will steal anything that they can sell easily on the streets. For example, Tide detergent has become extremely popular to steal because it is being used as an alternative form of currency on the streets of many American cities. The following is from a recent article in The Daily….
    Theft of Tide detergent has become so rampant that authorities from New York to Oregon are keeping tabs on the soap spree, and some cities are setting up special task forces to stop it. And retailers like CVS are taking special security precautions to lock down the liquid.
    One Tide taker in West St. Paul, Minn., made off with $25,000 in the product over 15 months before he was busted last year.
    “That was unique that he stole so much soap,” said West St. Paul Police Chief Bud Shaver. “The name brand is [all] Tide. Amazing, huh?”
    Tide has become a form of currency on the streets. The retail price is steadily high — roughly $10 to $20 a bottle — and it’s a staple in households across socioeconomic classes.
    #11 In Baltimore, a man was recently knocked to the ground, stripped naked and had his car keys, watch, money and cell phone taken. In itself, that is not much of a story. But what made it a story was that instead of helping the man, the crowd of onlookers watching all of this happen laughed hysterically while recording the incident with their cell phone cameras for YouTube.
    #12 The number of Americans that are willing to become permanently dependent on the government is absolutely astounding. At this point, there are approximately 67 million Americans that get some form of financial assistance from the federal government.
    #13 Government dependence is increasingly being glamorized in popular culture. For example, one nightclub down in Alabama recently held a “Food Stamp Friday” party.
    #14 As I have written about previously, employees of the federal government are living the high life at the expense of hard working American taxpayers. In fact, one federal employee recently made an outrageous rap video about it.
    #15 Recently, I reported on the “Obama flag” that was flying above a Democratic Party headquarters down in Florida. Well, now another one has been spotted flying above a home in New Jersey. During the 2012 election season will we see American flags that have had the stars replaced with the face of Barack Obama flying over homes and businesses from coast to coast?
    #16 In the United States today, the use of sexual humiliation by security officials has become normalized. If you are not convinced of this yet, you should check out this video of a woman sobbing as the TSA touches her private areas as they pat her down.
    #17 Sadly, TSA officials have shown over and over that they are deeply corrupt and cannot be trusted. For example, one TSA manager at Dulles International Airport was recently discovered to be running a prostitution ring out of a local hotel room.
    #18 According to the U.S. Supreme Court, police in the United States can now strip search you any time that they want. All they need to do is to make up some reason to arrest you. Needless to say, police all over the country are now going to be looking for any reason that they can think of to arrest very attractive women.
    #19 In the United States, it has become regular practice for young couples to “live together” before marriage. In fact, in America today more than half of all couples now move in together before they get married. Sadly, the divorce rate for couples that live together first is also significantly higher than for those that do not. At this point, America has the highest divorce rate on the globe by a wide margin.
    #20 The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the world by far. In fact, the United States has a teen pregnancy rate that is more than twice as high as Canada, more than three times as high as France and more than seven times as high as Japan.
    #21 Unfortunately, there are dramatic consequences for all of the loose sexuality going on in America. The CDC says that there are approximately 19 million new cases of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia in America every single year.
    #22 Most Americans have no idea this is happening, but the truth is that abortion clinics all over the country are selling aborted baby parts to scientists for medical research. If we keep cheapening human life like this, eventually it will mean next to nothing to us.
    #23 According to the results of one recent investigation, an astounding 30 percent of all Internet traffic goes to pornography websites. A different survey found that 25 percent of all employees that have Internet access in the United States visit pornography websites while they are at work.
    #24 There is a right way and a wrong way to do things. This is especially true when it comes to notifying military wives that their husbands are dead. Sadly, some women are now being notified about the deaths of their husbands in the military through Facebook.
    #25 Our politicians are stealing 150 million dollars an hour from future generations so that we can live more comfortably right now. The American people participate in this theft by voting these politicians back into office over and over again. The crime that we are committing against future generations is almost too horrible for words.

    So before you start throwing rocks at President Mugabe, just look around and try and see how green the grass is on the other side of the fence!

    • comment-avatar

      I don’t care about the corruption in America. I care about the corruption in Zimbabwe. That is what affects me, my family and my country men. Stop trying to deflect.

      • comment-avatar
        American 9 years ago

        You will definitely care Buti if the Zimbabwe Government is daft enough to allow unregulated fdi into the country. Foreign investors are much better at looting than Zimbabweans can ever be. Just look north in the Eurozone where the looting stands at 162 billion and counting exceeding the entire EU annual budget. The next time they are allowed unfettered access to exploit Zimbabwe’s resources and the economy, God forbid,people like who are clamoring for massa’s aid lately, you, your family and for that matter your countrymen will all be eating grass with huge empty holes of exhausted mines across the length and breath of your country. Be careful what you ask for.

    • comment-avatar
      Clive Sutherland 9 years ago

      You are frothing at the mouth and clearly a Mugabe apologist, Zimbabweans are educated enough to know that crime and corruption happens all over the world, however, right now we are concerned with the corruption in our own homeland, get it?

      • comment-avatar
        American 9 years ago

        Agree, most Zimbabweans are educated enough to know that crime and corruption happens the world over but they are not stupid enough to allow the racist white settlers to come through the back door to steal their land,plunder their resources and dominate their economy a second time. That makes you an apologist for colonial theft of African resources by minority white settlers and imperialist greed.

  • comment-avatar

    Ed Melik Maybe you should should put this on A Website called THE AMERICAN SITUATION. We don’t care a damn about the coruption in America. We are Zimbabweans so we care about the coruption in Zimbabwe. Are you trying to say if America was killing people on the street it’s ok for the Zimbabwean authorities to do the same? What do you have to benifit for covering for Mugabe unless you are also having some of the pie. You are not Zimbabwean. Comment on your America to Americans and leave us to comment on our Zimbabwean situation to Zimbabweans.

    • comment-avatar
      American 9 years ago

      It is crystal clear that all the mdc-t morons and your racist supporters on this page will deal with the devil if it suits your purpose. How sad!.

  • comment-avatar
    gonzo 9 years ago

    well said Doctor do little

  • comment-avatar
    Mukanya 9 years ago

    The Godfather is happy with the scenario.

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    Mthwakazi 9 years ago

    How on earth can any sane person expect the Shona gukurahundi to act on corruption; when infact his whole life has continuously been punctuated by dishonesty; lies and corruption against opponents, in an effort to retain power at all costs?

    Gukurahundism in Mthwakazi in the 1980s and the false reasons advanced for it was in itself corruption of the highest order. All the lies about the political opposition – about them being western puppets etc are all corruption of the highest order. He is corruption personified!!

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    chirasha 9 years ago

    Mthwakazi,why are do you hate shona ,i have been reading you messages,its so hurting so are you saying all shona people contributed towards gugurahundi its better you stop commenting myself i am shona but i lost a brother who was shot and died at mplilo casuality may you please stop hurting us

    • comment-avatar
      Mthwakazi 9 years ago

      According to your logic, Mthwakazi people in general should also feel equaly guilty when Mthwakazi gukurahundi Enos Nkala is attacked for his 1980s gukurahundism in Mthwakazi?

      This is twisted logic my brother. This is about Shona gukurahundi Mugabe; not you or any other innocent Shona – just as it is about Mthwakazi gukurahundi Nkala – not about each and every innocent Mthwakazi!!