Zimbabwe goes for wealth hidden abroad


Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) chairperson, Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo

from DANIEL JONES in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
VICTORIA FALLS, (CAJ News) ZIMBABWE is engaging neighbouring countries to recover funds and assets stolen from the country and externalised during years of corruption.

Amnesty will be offered to individuals who stashed such wealth if they cooperate with the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) in its efforts to recover the assets.

“We are working with regional and international anti-corruption units in other countries such as Botswana, South Africa and Zambia so they help us learn their norms as we want to follow up on stolen wealth,” said Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo, ZACC chairperson.

“We are going to investigate. Citizens who acquired the assets through corruption should bring them back. They are not going to be arrested. We will give them amnesty,” she assured.

Matanda-Moyo said ZACC had come up with a dashboard to measure levels of corruption as efforts to follow up on stolen wealth and assets intensified.

There is suspicion that there are millions of dollars stolen in the country through money laundering, externalisation and invested in other countries.

The ZACC chair said Zimbabwe aimed to eradicate corruption in order to achieve its economic Vision 2030 aimed at attaining upper middle-income status.

She said corruption deprives the government of revenue through tax evasion.

Zimbabwe also struggles to attract foreign direct investment because of the reputation for corruption.

ZACC was initially established in 2005 premised on the Zimbabwe Anti- Corruption Commission Act of 2004.

It was reconstituted through the 2013 constitution amendment when commissioners were put in place.

The Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime (Amendment) Bill, 2019 was put in place to regulate and prevent obtaining of illegal fund disguised as legitimate.

ZACC recently disclosed most of its cases were reported by whistle blowers, which led to the arrest of more than 100 criminals in the first half of the year.

However, in the absence of a law protecting whistleblowers, there have been reports of some of them being harassed because of a legal vacuum for them to get protection.

While some politicians have been jailed and others fired, there are concerns however about conviction rate.

Critics of President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration accuse authorities of using the anti-corruption crusade to settle political scores.

Loyalists of his predecessor, Robert Mugabe (now late), in the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front (PF) are allegedly targeted.

– CAJ News




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