Zacc ‘re­ceives threats’ from Cab­i­net min­is­ters

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Fari­rai Machivenyika Harare Bureau

THE Zim­babwe Anti-Cor­rup­tion Com­mis­sion has said it is re­ceiv­ing threats from Cab­i­net min­is­ters and po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence from high pro­file in­di­vid­u­als, which have ham­pered its in­ves­ti­ga­tions of cases of cor­rup­tion in line with its con­sti­tu­tional man­date.

ZACC said in its 2016 An­nual Re­port that it feared for the lives of its of­fi­cers fol­low­ing such threats.

The re­port was re­cently tabled in Par­lia­ment by Vice Pres­i­dent Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa in his ca­pac­ity as the over­seer of the Min­istry of Jus­tice, Le­gal and Par­lia­men­tary Af­fairs.

“In the pe­riod un­der re­view, ZACC in­ves­ti­gated a num­ber of cor­rup­tion cases, large and com­plex, in­volv­ing high pro­file fig­ures, in­clud­ing Cab­i­net Min­is­ters as a re­sult of pub­lic re­ports, in­for­ma­tion and in­quiries among other sources,” said ZACC.

“There were in­ci­dences of po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence, in­clud­ing threats by min­is­ters against ZACC of­fi­cers. This com­pro­mises in­ves­ti­ga­tions and puts the life of of­fi­cers in real dan­ger.”

ZACC did not men­tion the spe­cific cases in which it was threat­ened due to po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence.

But one of the high pro­file cases it han­dled in­volved Higher and Ter­tiary Ed­u­ca­tion, Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Pro­fes­sor Jonathan Moyo and his Deputy Dr God­frey Gan­dawa, who were up for al­leged abuse of of­fice and mis­ap­pro­pri­at­ing over $400 000 Zim­babwe Man­power De­vel­op­ment Fund (Zimdef) funds.

Zimdef chief ex­ec­u­tive Mr Fred­er­ick Man­dizvidza and Zimdef prin­ci­pal di­rec­tor (fi­nance) Mr Ni­cholas Ma­pute, were also ar­rested over sim­i­lar al­le­ga­tions and their case is pend­ing be­fore the courts.

Last year, ZACC is­sued war­rants of ar­rest to Per­ma­nent Sec­re­taries Grace Mu­tandiri (Lands and Re­set­tle­ment), Munesu Mun­odawafa (Trans­port and In­fra­struc­ture De­vel­op­ment), Ge­orge Mlilo (Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment, Pub­lic Works and Na­tional Hous­ing), Wil­lard Ma­nungo (Fi­nance and Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment), Eve­lyn Ndlovu (Small and Medium En­ter­prises and Co-op­er­a­tive De­vel­op­ment) and Sam Kundishora (In­for­ma­tion, Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Tech­nol­ogy and Courier Ser­vices).

Oth­ers who got the same war­rants in­cluded Zim­babwe Tourism Author­ity chief ex­ec­u­tive Mr Karikoga Kaseke, Zim­babwe Na­tional Roads Ad­min­is­tra­tion act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive En­gi­neer Moses Juma and Zim­babwe Broad­cast­ing Cor­po­ra­tion act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive Mr Pa­trick Mavhura.

NetOne act­ing man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Mr Brian Mu­tandiro, Pre­mier Ser­vice Med­i­cal Aid So­ci­ety man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Mr Tendai Ka­pumha and his Civil Avi­a­tion Author­ity of Zim­babwe coun­ter­part, Mr David Cha­wota, are also be­ing in­ves­ti­gated.

ZACC’s probes have sucked in com­pa­nies owned by prom­i­nent busi­ness­peo­ple Messrs Wick­nell Chivayo (In­tra­trek), Phillip Chiyangwa (Pinnacle Hold­ings), Farai Jere (Hel­craw Elec­tri­cal), Moses Ching­wena (Croco Mo­tors), Agrippa Masiyakurima (Bopela), Paddy Zhanda (Verac­ity Pri­vate Lim­ited) and Shadreck Mashayamombe (Solomon Mu­juru Hous­ing Trust).

ZESA Hold­ings bosses are in trou­ble with ZACC over the award­ing of Mutare Power Peak project to Hel­craw Elec­tri­cal Pri­vate Lim­ited owned by busi­ness­man Mr Jere.

It is al­leged that the State Pro­cure­ment Board awarded the ten­der to the com­pany that had failed to meet tech­ni­cal specifications stated by the Zim­babwe Power Com­pany.

Al­le­ga­tions are that the SPB uni­lat­er­ally awarded the ten­der to tech­ni­cally non-com­pli­ant Hel­craw Elec­tri­cal (Pvt) Ltd be­cause it was the low­est bid­der at $92 mil­lion against a rec­om­men­da­tion by ZPC to award the ten­der to tech­ni­cally-com­pli­ant Pito In­vest­ments that had charged $120 mil­lion for the emer­gency diesel power plant.

Also un­der spot­light is Zesa’s deal with In­tra­trek owned by busi­ness­man Mr Wick­nell Chivayo, whose com­pany clinched a $202 mil­lion ten­der to con­struct a 100-megawatt so­lar power plant in Gwanda, Mata­bele­land South prov­ince. The law en­force­ment agents sus­pect that ten­der pro­ce­dures could have been flouted.

Zesa is also un­der probe for en­gag­ing Fruit­ful Com­mu­ni­ca­tions owned by High­field MP Mr Pyschol­ogy Mazi­wisa (Zanu-PF) and jour­nal­ist Mr Os­car Pam­buka over how the com­pany was meant to do pub­lic re­la­tions when the power util­ity has a fully-fledged pub­lic re­la­tions depart­ment headed by Mr Fullard Gwasira.

Re­ports say sev­eral Gov­ern­ment min­is­ters and other high pro­file fig­ures have crim­i­nal cases that are at dif­fer­ent lev­els of in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

Prof Moyo has been den­i­grat­ing ZACC, claim­ing that it was im­prop­erly con­sti­tuted and was not sup­ported to han­dle his case.

ZACC also noted in its re­port that fi­nan­cial chal­lenges were also af­fect­ing its abil­ity to ful­fil its con­sti­tu­tional man­date.

The com­mis­sion was al­lo­cated $1,6 mil­lion in 2016, although some of the money has not been dis­bursed.

Mean­while, ZACC owes the Zim­babwe Rev­enue Author­ity $5 mil­lion in tax ar­rears ac­crued due to abuse of a Re­serve Bank of Zim­babwe ve­hi­cle fa­cil­ity.

Jus­tice Ni­cholas Mathonsi

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