Victor Maphosa Mashonaland East Bureau
AS part of its mandate to fight and prevent corruption, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) has taken anti-corruption education to rural areas to sensitise communities on graft and how it can be prevented.
The objectives of the rural anti-corruption campaign is to raise awareness among the rural populace, empower the rural people with knowledge, skills and strategies in mitigating corruption, publicise ZACC and its mandate to all remote areas and places, and to create uncomfortable zones for the corrupt in Zimbabwe.
Recently, ZACC officials conducted awareness campaigns in Mashonaland East’s nine districts ending the campaign at Mutawatawa business centre in Uzumba Maramba Pfungwe.
Officiating at the event on Sunday, ZACC Commissioner Michael Santu said people must take part in the fight against graft.
“As you may all be aware, our mandate as ZACC is to fight all forms of corruption across the length and breadth of this country, principally through the following strategies: raising anti-corruption awareness in public and private institutions, conducting compliance and systems review exercises in public and private institutions, thorough investigating cases of corruption, recovering proceeds of corruption,” he said.
“In doing all the above, I need to stress that ZACC is a people-driven institution which responds to societal matters relating to mitigating corruption. Our thrust is guided by the Government philosophy of not leaving any individual behind in Zimbabwe. This is why today we are in Maramba district and almost 170km away from Harare.
“ZACC is very grateful to the Government of Zimbabwe, all stakeholders, and traditional leadership in giving immeasurable support in the fight against corruption. It is my hope that the people of Mashonaland East and Maramba in particular will be more visible in waging a war against corruption going forward.”
In 2020, President Mnangagwa launched the National Anti-Corruption Strategy which is a policy document which explains how individuals, institutions, both public and private, can participate in the grand fight against corruption.
The strategy operates under six pillars.
The first pillar involves citizens’ empowerment and awareness; this pillar encourages all individuals and institutions that educate the public to include anti-corruption content in their day to day work activities.
The second pillar is corruption enforcement and this involves ZACC, the police, Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA), Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and other departments to work together in instituting thorough investigation of corruption cases.
The third pillar involve institutions requiring greater accountability, and thus tasks them to institute measures that enhance transparency and accountability, primarily in state owned enterprises and including all parastatals.
The fourth pillar involves institutions which deliver justice and this one comprises of the Judicial Service Commission, National Prosecuting Authority, Law Society of Zimbabwe and others. These take a leading role in the interpretation of the law and fair trial of suspects on both criminal and civil proceedings in the fight against corruption.
The fifth pillar involves the recovery of proceeds of corruption where in this one, ZACC, NPA, JSC and other departments have been tasked to carry out civil forfeiture of all assets deemed to be tainted or criminally acquired.
The whole objective is to send a strong message that criminality does not pay at all.
The sixth pillar involves political actors, where all willing politicians and political parties have been tasked to create conducive climate for a spirited fight against corruption without necessarily being partisan.
ZACC works with all politicians who are in Parliament and more so all legislators who are members of African Parliamentary Network Against Corruption (APNAC).