Status on the Signature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Instruments by SADC Member States

Status on the Signature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Instruments by SADC Member States – 11 May 2017

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

The significance of signing and ratifying regional, continental and international anti-corruption instruments or treaties and bringing them into force at the earliest possible moment cannot be overemphasized.  The signature, ratification and domestication of these instruments and treaties is urgent considering the deleterious effects of corruption on African development. However, the lack of the progress thereof, is devastatingly worrying. This triggered an interest in this assessment which looks at the progress of signature and ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC), the AU Convention on preventing and combating Corruption (AUCPCC), and the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) by the SADC member states. This is a third assessment of this nature commissioned the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa, to monitor and report on progress made by SADC Member States vis-à-vis the signature and ratification thereof. It does not look at the extent to which the Member States have domesticated the same. This will be part of future assessments that are of great interest to researchers and networks such as the UNCAC Coalition.

 

In a nutshell, the assessment made a number of findings. Firstly, the status of ratification stands at 87% for SADC Protocol against Corruption, 100% for UN Convention against Corruption and 67% for the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption.  Of the 3 Conventions, the ratification of the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption is the lowest since it stands at 67% among the 15 SADC Member States. There will be huge value if one interrogates why AU Member States do not all seem to support such an important ‘assegai’ or tool against corruption, which they drafted and adopted themselves. Why did Africa come up with the Convention in the first place? Where they forced to come up with the same? Are they genuinely interested in fighting corruption? All these questions need answers.

 

The signing of these three leading conventions stands at 93%, 87% and 80% for the SADC Protocol against Corruption, UN Convention against Corruption and the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption respectively. Again the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption registered the lowest. Refer to Table 1 below for more information.

 

Table 1: Status of Signature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Instruments

  Number of SADC Member states out of a total of 15 signing and ratifying the SADC Protocol against Corruption Number of SADC Member states out of a total of 15 signing and ratifying the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption Number of SADC Member states out of a total of 15 signing and ratifying the UN Convention against Corruption
Signature 14 out of 15 SADC Member States signed (93%) 12 out of 15 SADC Member States signed (80%) 13 out of 15 SADC Member States signed (87%)
Ratification 13 out of 15 SADC Member States ratified (87%) 10 out of 15 SADC Member States ratified (67%) 15 out of 15 SADC Member States ratified (100%)

 

Furthermore, it would be a remiss if this assessment fails to name and single-out the countries still lagging behind. Table 2 below shows that Madagascar is the only SADC Member State that has not signed the SADC Protocol against Corruption. In addition, Madagascar joins Seychelles to make the only two countries that have not ratified the same instrument.

 

Table 2: SADC Member States Lagging Behind

Anti-Corruption Instruments SADC Member States that have not signed SADC Member States that have not ratified
1)     SADC Protocol against Corruption o   Madagascar o   Madagascar

o   Seychelles

2)     AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption o   Botswana

o   Malawi

o   Seychelles

o   Angola

o   Botswana

o   Democratic Republic of Congo

o   Mauritius

o   Swaziland

3)     UN Convention against Corruption o   Botswana

o   Democratic Republic of Congo

o   –

 

The AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption appears to be the most unpopular since it has registered the lowest in both being signed and ratified by SADC Member States. African Governments should be interrogated on why such an important instrument has lost its support.

 

In keeping with the above, the following recommendations are made:

 

  • The governments of Madagascar and Seychelles should ratify the SADC Protocol against Corruption;
  • The governments of Angola, Botswana, DRC, Mauritius and Swaziland should ratify the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption;
  • Pursuant to Article 11 of the SADC Protocol against Corruption, SADC Member States should establish a Committee to oversee the implementation of the Protocol.[1] This is long overdue considering the destructive effects of corruption in Southern Africa.

 

 


 

  1. INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND INFORMATION

 

In 2007 and 2012, the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) commissioned studies aimed at ascertaining the status of signature[2] and ratification[3] of the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC)[4], AU Convention on preventing and combating Corruption (AUCPCC),[5] and the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC)[6] by SADC member states.[7]

 

The 2007 study produced a report[8] which was followed by a number of advocacy activities. Since then there has been a lot of progress as shown below:

 

  1. The DRC and Mozambique ratified the SPAC on 19 May 2008 and 28 December 2007 respectively;
  2. Malawi and Seychelles ratified AUCPCC on 26 November 2007 and 1 June 2008 respectively;
  3. Botswana, DRC, Malawi, Mozambique, and Zambia ratified the UNCAC on 27 June 2011, 23 September 2010, 4 December 2007, 9 April 2008, and 7 December 2007 respectively

 

The 2012 study on the same subject made the following findings:

  1. Swaziland remained as the only SADC member state that had not ratified the UNCAC;
  2. Madagascar had neither signed nor ratified the SPAC whilst Seychelles signed but had not ratified the same; and
  3. Angola, Botswana, DRC, Mauritius and Swaziland had not ratified the AUCPCC, whilst Botswana had neither signed nor ratified the same.

 

The recommendations made through the 2012 assessment report were that:

  • The Kingdom of Swaziland should ratify the UNCAC, since this had reputational implications on the country and the rest of the SADC member states;
  • The governments of Madagascar and Seychelles should ratify the SPAC; and
  • The governments of Angola, Botswana, DRC, Mauritius and Swaziland should ratify the AUCPCC.

 

After the publication of the 2012 report a number of advocacy activities were carried out. These included the following:

  1. On 23 August 2012, a letter was sent to E. Dr Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini pleading that Swaziland ratifies the AUCPCC  and the UNCAC.[9]
  2. On 23 August 2012, the Botswana Government received a letter from the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa informing the Botswana Government that it had neither signed nor ratified the AU Convention on preventing and combating Corruption (AUCPCC).[10] A response from the government showed that the letter was received and sent to the President’s private office.[11] Later on the 3rd of September 2012, the Government confirmed receipt of the letter. [12]
  3. On 28 August 2012, the SADC Secretariat through Dr Tomaz Augusto Salomão was asked to motivate its member states to take the subject of corruption very seriously by ratifying anti-corruption instruments and domesticating them and where possible give technical support on the implementation or domestication thereof. Furthermore, it was urged to set up and empower institutional arrangements for the implementation of Article 11 of the SPAC which provides for the establishment of a Committee[13]
  4. On the 28th of August 2012, the Government of Mauritius was notified that it had signed the AU Convention on preventing and combating Corruption but had not ratified it. [14]
  5. The Governments of DRC and Angola were also urged to sign and ratify anti-corruption treaties.
  6. The report was widely circulated globally and through http://www.kubatana.net.

 

 

During that time there were a number of challenges in some countries. In Madagascar, Andre Rajoelina was the President of the transitional High authority and did not have the power/right to commit the country to any international treaties. [15] The same was the case in other SADC Member States where there were conflicts.[16]

 

2.     PROGRESS ON THE SIGNATURE AND RATIFICATION OF THE SPAC, AUCPCC and UNCAC

The following findings were made on the status of signature and ratification of the SPAC, AUCPCC and the UNCAC by SADC member states:

2.1 Signature and Ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC)

The SPAC is one of the flagship instruments of the SADC for preventing and combating corruption in the region. According to the SADC (2011:12), the Protocol was signed by 14 SADC Heads of State and Government in Malawi on 14 August 2001. It was ratified by the majority of the SADC member states as depicted in Table 1 below[17].

 

The only two countries that have not ratified are Madagascar and Seychelles. On the 6th of May 2017, the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa wrote to the SADC Focal Persons for both Seychelles[18] and Madagascar[19] seeking feedback on their plans on the same subject. Part of the letter to the Government of Seychelles reads “We have noted that Seychelles signed the SADC Protocol against Corruption on 14 August 2001. However, we have noted that there is no indication on whether or not you ratified the protocol and hence this enquiry” whilst an extract of the letter to the Government of Madagascar also reads “We have observed that there is no information to show that Madagascar has both signed and ratified the  SADC Protocol against Corruption and hence this enquiry”.

 

On the 8th of May 2017, the Government of Seychelles confirmed that the Government had been notified.[20] In its response, the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa urged the Government to ratify the Protocol.[21]

 

Table 3 below gives the detailed status of all the 15 SADC Member States.

 

Table 3: Signature and ratification of the SADC Protocol against corruption

 

Country Heads of State and Government[22] Date of signing Date of ratification
1.       Angola H.E. José Eduardo dos Santos 14 August 2001 17 July 2005
2.       Botswana H.E. President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama 14 August 2001 14 August 2001
3.       DRC H.E. President Joseph Kabila Kabange 14 August 2001 19 May 2008
4.       Lesotho His Royal Highness King Letsie III 14 August 2001 29 July 2003
5.       Madagascar H. E. RAJAONARIMAMPIANINA Hery Martial No No
6.       Malawi His Excellency Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika 14 August 2001 2 September 2002
7.       Mauritius Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, GCSK, CSK, PhD 14 August 2001 4 January 2002
8.       Mozambique H.E. Filipe Nyusi 14 August 2001 28 December 2007
9.       Namibia H.E. Dr. Hage Geingob 14 August 2001 23 June 2005
10.   Seychelles H.E. James Alix Michel 14 August 2001 No
11.   South Africa H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma 14 August 2001 15 May 2003
12.   Swaziland His Majesty, King Mswati III 14 August 2001 1 August 2006
13.   Tanzania H.E. Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli 14 August 2001 20 August 2003
14.   Zambia H.E. Edgar Lungu 14 August 2001 8 July 2003
15.   Zimbabwe H.E. President Robert Gabriel Mugabe 14 August 2001 8 October 2004

 

However,  it appears that the SADC Secretariat and the Member States are not demonstrating full commitment towards the implementation of the provisions of the Protocol itself. For instance, Article 11 of the Protocol provides for the establishment of a Committee[23] but shockingly the Committee is not yet in place after 16 years of existence of the protocol.

 

2.2 Signature and Ratification of the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC)

The AUCPCC, which entered into force on 5 August 2006, was adopted by the 2nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) in Maputo, Mozambique on 11 July 2003. According to the African Union (2010:2) as at the 6th of August 2010, the AUCPCC had been signed by 45 member states and ratified by 31 members only.

 

As at 2012, the African Union Advisory Board on Corruption (2017), states that the number of ratifiers rose from 31 to 34 in 2012[24]. At the continental level the following Member States ratified the treaty as at the year 2012: Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Kenya, Libya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Mali, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Table 4 below shows that there has not been much progress by SADC Member States in ratifying the Convention.

 

Table 4: Signature and ratification of the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption by SADC member states

 

Country Heads of State and Government[25] Date of signing Date of ratification
1.       Angola H.E. José Eduardo dos Santos 22 January 2007 No
2.       Botswana H.E. President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama No No
3.       DRC H.E. President Joseph Kabila Kabange 5 December 2003 No
4.       Lesotho His Royal Highness King Letsie III 27 February 2004 26 October 2004
5.       Madagascar H. E. RAJAONARIMAMPIANINA Hery Martial 28 February 2004 6 October 2004
6.       Malawi His Excellency Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika No 26 November 2007
7.       Mauritius Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, GCSK, CSK, PhD 6 July 2004 No
8.       Mozambique H.E. Filipe Nyusi 15 December 2003 2 August 2006
9.       Namibia H.E. Dr. Hage Geingob 9 December 2003 5 August 2004
10.   Seychelles H.E. James Alix Michel 1 June 2008
11.   South Africa H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma 16 March 2004 11 November 2005
12.   Swaziland His Majesty, King Mswati III 7 December 2004 No
13.   Tanzania H.E. Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli 5 November 2003 22 February 2005
14.   Zambia H.E. Edgar Lungu 03 August 2005 30 March 2007
15.   Zimbabwe H.E. President Robert Gabriel Mugabe 18 November 2003 17 December 2006

 

2.3 Signature and Ratification of the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC)

According to the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (2016), Swaziland which was the only SADC Member State that had not ratified finally ratified the UNCAC on 24 September 2012. Table 5 below shows the status of signature and ratification by SADC member states.[26] However, Botswana and DRC have not signed the same.

 

Table 5: Signature and ratification of the UN Convention against Corruption

 

Country Heads of State and Government[27] Date of Signature Date of Ratification
1.       Angola H.E. José Eduardo dos Santos 10 December 2003 29 August 2006
2.       Botswana H.E. President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama No 27 June 2011
3.       DRC H.E. President Joseph Kabila Kabange No 23 September 2010
4.       Lesotho His Royal Highness King Letsie III 16 September 2005 16 September 2005
5.       Madagascar H. E. RAJAONARIMAMPIANINA Hery Martial 10 December 2003 22 September 2004
6.       Malawi His Excellency Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika 21 September 2004 4 December 2007
7.       Mauritius Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, GCSK, CSK, PhD 9 December 2003 15 December 2004
8.       Mozambique H.E. Filipe Nyusi 25 May 2004 9 April 2008
9.       Namibia H.E. Dr. Hage Geingob 9 December 2003 3 August 2004
10.   Seychelles H.E. James Alix Michel 27 February 2004 16 March 2006
11.   South Africa H.E. President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma 9 December 2003 22 November 2004
12.   Swaziland His Majesty, King Mswati III 15 September 2005 24 September 2012[28]
13.   Tanzania H.E. Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli 9 December 2003 25 May 2005
14.   Zambia H.E. Edgar Lungu 11 December 2003 7 December 2007
15.   Zimbabwe H.E. President Robert Gabriel Mugabe 20 February 2004 8 March 2007

3.     CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The status of signature and ratification by SADC Member States is encouraging. However, the usefulness thereof,  will be in doubt if corruption remains uncurbed at the national level. Southern Africa has great potential of being prosperous, yet some of countries in the region remain poor due to bad governance, mal-administration and corruption.

 

In keeping with the findings of this assessment, the following recommendations are made:

 

  • The governments of Madagascar and Seychelles should ratify the SADC Protocol against Corruption;
  • The governments of Angola, Botswana, DRC, Mauritius and Swaziland should ratify the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption;
  • Pursuant to Article 11 of the SADC Protocol against Corruption, SADC Member States should establish a Committee to oversee the implementation of the Protocol.[29] This is long overdue considering the deleterious effects of corruption in Southern Africa.

[1] Article  11 of the SPAC, provides for institutional arrangements for implementation of SPAC through the setting up of a Committee to oversee implementation.

  1. A Committee consisting of State Parties is hereby established to oversee the implementation of this Protocol.
  2. Each State Party shall report to the Committee within one year of becoming a Party, on the progress made in the implementation of this Protocol. Thereafter, each State Party shall report to the Committee every two years.
  3. The Committee shall, inter-alia, be responsible for the following:
  • gathering and disseminating information amongst State Parties;
  • organising training programmes as and when appropriate;
  • evaluating programmes to be put in place and a programme of co-operation for the implementation of this Protocol; and
  • providing any other related assistance to State Parties as and when appropriate;
  • reporting to Council on a regular basis on the progress made by each State Party in complying with the provisions of this Protocol.

[2] Signature to a convention is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval. This means that the signature does not establish the consent to be bound but is an important means of authentication and expresses the willingness of the signatory state to continue the treaty-making process. In other words signature to a treaty qualifies the signatory state to proceed to ratification, acceptance or approval. It is significant since it also creates an obligation to refrain, in good faith, from acts that would defeat the object and the purpose of the treaty. (Arts.10 and 18, Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties 1969)

[3] On the other side, ratification is an international act whereby a state indicates its consent to be bound to a treaty. Ratification grants states the necessary time-frame to seek the required approval for the treaty on the domestic level and to enact the necessary legislation to give domestic effect to that treaty. [Arts.2 (1) (b), 14 (1) and 16, Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties 1969]

[4] The SADC Protocol against Corruption (SPAC): According to the SADC (2011:12), the Protocol was signed by 14 SADC Heads of State and Government in Malawi on 14 August 2001. This excluded Madagascar that only joined SADC in August 2005.[4] In line with Article 3 of SPAC its purpose is:

  1. to promote and strengthen the development, by each of the State Parties, of mechanisms needed to prevent, detect, punish and eradicate corruption in the public and private sector,
  2. to promote, facilitate and regulate cooperation among the State Parties to ensure the effectiveness of measures and actions to prevent, detect, punish and eradicate corruption in the public and private sectors; and
  3. to foster the development and harmonization of policies and domestic legislation of the State Parties relating to the prevention, detection, punishment and eradication of corruption in the public and private sectors.

[5] The AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC):  The AUCPCC, which entered into force on 5 August 2006, was adopted by the 2nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) in Maputo, Mozambique on 11 July 2003. The objectives of the Convention are to:

  1. Promote and strengthen the development in Africa by each State Party, of mechanisms required to prevent, detect, punish and eradicate corruption and related offences in the public and private sectors.
  2. Promote, facilitate and regulate cooperation among the State Parties to ensure the effectiveness of measures and actions to prevent, detect, punish and eradicate corruption and related offences in Africa.
  3. Coordinate and harmonize the policies and legislation between State Parties for the purposes of prevention, detection, punishment and eradication of corruption on the continent.

[6] The UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC):  The UNCAC entered into force on 14 December 2005. The purposes of UNCAC are:

  1. To promote and strengthen measures to prevent and combat corruption more efficiently and effectively;
  2. To promote, facilitate and support international cooperation and technical assistance in the prevention of and fight against corruption, including in asset recovery;
  3. To promote integrity, accountability and proper management of public affairs and public property.

[7] Chinhamo, O and Chaumba, A (2012). Progress on Signature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Instruments by SADC Member States: Who is lagging Behind among SADC Member States? [online] Available at https://actsouthernafrica.files.wordpress.com/2012/08/24-august-2012-progress-report-on-the-status-of-signature-and-ratification-of-anti-corruption-treaties-by-sadc-member-states.pdf [Accessed on 5 May 2017]

[8]Chinhamo, O and Shumba, G (2007). Report on the Status of Signature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Treaties by the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Member States. [online]. Available at http://archive.kubatana.net/docs/demgg/act-sa_sadc_signature_of_treaties_070730.pdf [Accesed on 6 May 2017]

[9] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (23 August 2012) Urgent letter to H.E. Dr Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini- Swaziland- Signature and Ratification of Anti-CorruptionTreaties. E-mail to: Mabuza, S. (mabuzasindi@gov.sz).

[10] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (23 August 2012) Letter to H.E. President Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama;. E-mail to: Ramsay, J; (jramsay@gov.bw).

[11] Ramsay, J. (jramsay@gov.bw) (23 August 2012) Letter to H.E. President Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama;. E-mail to: Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa; (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com).

[12] Dinale, L. (lesegodinale@gmail.com) (3 September 2012) Letter to H.E. President Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama;. E-mail to: Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa; (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com).

[13] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (28 August 2012) Letter to Dr Tomaz Augusto Salomão- Status ofSignature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Treaties by SADC Member States. E-mail to: Salomão, T. (Penehupifolm@rocketmail.com and LMartin@sadc.int).

[14] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (28 August 2012) Letter to Dr Tomaz Augusto Salomão- Status ofSignature and Ratification of Anti-Corruption Treaties by SADC Member States. E-mail to: Salomão, T. (Penehupifolm@rocketmail.com and LMartin@sadc.int).

[15]  Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (28 August 2012) Mauritius recommended to ratify the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption. E-mail to: RAMGOOLAM, N. (pmo@mail.gov.mu).

[16] ibid

[17] SADC (2011). SADC Treaty and Protocols Status of Protocols in Force. [online]. Available from: http://www.sadc.int/files/5113/3162/1668/STATUS_OF_SIGNATURE__RATIFICATION_OF_PROTOCOLS_REVISED-_24-11-2011.pdf. [Accessed on 20 August 2012].

[18] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (5 May 2017) Letter to Mr Maurice Loustau-Lalanne. Status on the Ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption. E-mail to: Lalane, M. L. (mloustaulalanne@mfa.gov.sc and copied to kracombo@mfa.gov.sc, nconstant@mfa.gov.sc, cmederic@seychelleshc.co.za).

[19] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (5 May 2017) Letter to Ms. Vololomiora Lalanirina Rabarijaona. Status on the Ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption. E-mail to: Rabarijaona, V.L. (miorarabarijaona@yahoo.fr and copied dcrmae@gmail.com, nirina.angie2013@gmail.com,ambamad.pta@infodoor.co.za).

[20] Lablache, F. (FLablache@mfa.gov.s) (8 May 2017) Letter to Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa;. E-mail to: (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com).

[21] Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa. (actsouthernafrica@gmail.com) (8 May 2017) Letter to Mr Maurice Loustau-Lalanne. Status on the Ratification of the SADC Protocol against Corruption. E-mail to: Lalane, M. L. (mloustaulalanne@mfa.gov.sc and copied to kracombo@mfa.gov.sc, nconstant@mfa.gov.sc, cmederic@seychelleshc.co.za).

[22] SADC (2017). Member States. [online] Available at http://www.sadc.int/member-states/[Accessed on 9 May 2017]

[23] Article  11 of the SPAC, provides for institutional arrangements for implementation of SPAC through the setting up of a Committee to oversee implementation.

  1. A Committee consisting of State Parties is hereby established to oversee the implementation of this Protocol.
  2. Each State Party shall report to the Committee within one year of becoming a Party, on the progress made in the implementation of this Protocol. Thereafter, each State Party shall report to the Committee every two years.
  3. The Committee shall, inter-alia, be responsible for the following:
  • gathering and disseminating information amongst State Parties;
  • organising training programmes as and when appropriate;
  • evaluating programmes to be put in place and a programme of co-operation for the implementation of this Protocol; and
  • providing any other related assistance to State Parties as and when appropriate;
  • reporting to Council on a regular basis on the progress made by each State Party in complying with the provisions of this Protocol.

[24] African Union Advisory Board on Corruption (2017). Status of ratification of the Convention on Corruption. [online]. Available at http://www.auanticorruption.org/auac/about/category/status-of-the-ratification. [Accessed on 6 May 2017]

[25] SADC (2017). Member States. [online] Available at http://www.sadc.int/member-states/[Accessed on 9 May 2017]

[26] UNODC (2017). United Nations Convention against Corruption. Signature and Ratification Status as of 12 December 2016. [online] Available at https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/treaties/CAC/signatories.html [Accessed on 6 May 2017]

[27] SADC (2017). Member States. [online] Available at http://www.sadc.int/member-states/[Accessed on 9 May 2017]

[28]UNODC (2017). United Nations Convention against Corruption . Signature and Ratification Status as of 12 December 2016. [online] Available at https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/treaties/CAC/signatories.html [Accessed on 6 May 2017]

[29] Article 11 of the SPAC, provides for institutional arrangements for implementation of SPAC through the setting up of a Committee to oversee implementation.

  1. A Committee consisting of State Parties is hereby established to oversee the implementation of this Protocol.
  2. Each State Party shall report to the Committee within one year of becoming a Party, on the progress made in the implementation of this Protocol. Thereafter, each State Party shall report to the Committee every two years.
  3. The Committee shall, inter-alia, be responsible for the following:
  • gathering and disseminating information amongst State Parties;
  • organising training programmes as and when appropriate;
  • evaluating programmes to be put in place and a programme of co-operation for the implementation of this Protocol; and
  • providing any other related assistance to State Parties as and when appropriate;
  • reporting to Council on a regular basis on the progress made by each State Party in complying with the provisions of this Protocol.
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A Forgotten Town of Thirsty Residents- The State of the Water Crisis in Redcliff, Zimbabwe

A FORGOTTEN TOWN OF THIRSTY RESIDENTS: THE STATE OF THE WATER CRISIS IN REDCLIFF, ZIMBABWE (19 April 2017)

1.     INTRODUCTION

Every person in Zimbabwe has the right to safe, clean and potable water.[1] The Human Right to Water and Sanitation (HRWS) was recognised as a human right by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly on 28 July 2010[2]. The HRWS is part and parcel of international law, by reference to human rights treaties, declarations and other relevant standards.[3] Furthermore, it is important to note that the Constitution of Zimbabwe does not only recognise this right to water but goes an extra mile to domesticate the right to food.[4] Court precedents such as the landmark ruling by Justice Bhunu in Mushoriwa v City of Harare HH 195/2014 speaks volumes about the importance attached to the enjoyment of the right to water. This is further cemented by Justice Muremba in Hove v City of Harare HH 205/2016.

Nevertheless, the human/legal right to water and sanitation is not being respected and enjoyed in some parts of the country. The town of Redcliff close to Kwekwe is one of the towns characterised by acute water shortages, water cuts and their attendant problems that include but not limited to outbreaks of water borne diseases, flight of investors and closure/downscaling of business operations.

The water supply to the town has never been stable before and after the closure of ZISCO Steel and it became worse after the Municipality of Redcliff (local authority) took over the water management role from ZISCO/NewZim Steel. It is now crystal clear that the local authority has no capacity to manage water supply in the most effective and efficient manner.

According to residents’ testimonies, the situation deteriorated since the 24th of October 2016, when there was absolutely no water supply in most parts of Rutendo, Simbi Park, Torwood and Millennium Park.[5]  However, it does not mean that there was water supply before the 24th of October 2016 but the supply was sporadic and infrequent.

In Simbi Park, the residents had no water supply for many years, yet the residents continue to be billed as if they have access to this basic commodity.[6]

In protest on the 19th of April 2017, residents, ratepayers and other stakeholders affected by the water crisis under the Municipality of Redcliff took to the streets demanding the following:

  • The immediate resignation of the Honourable Mayor, Councillors and Management of the Municipality of Redcliff based on allegations that they had failed to run the affairs of the local authority;
  • That the Ministry of Local Government appoints a Commission to run the affairs of the local authority;
  • The setting up a Commission of Enquiry into the mismanagement of Funds, corruption and other irregularities; and
  • That the City of Kwekwe and the ZINWA take-over water management in Redcliff.[7]

 

It had also been alleged that some individuals were taking advantage of the water crisis to enrich themselves through selling water to desperate water seekers. This was very common in the town and some well respected senior public officials were also implicated.

The outcry from the residents thus motivated an investigation that culminated into this report.

2.     FINDINGS

Through face to face interviews and the review of secondary data, the following findings were made:

2.1  Reality of the Water Crisis

A resident of Rutendo Township confirmed that there was no water supply at his house situated close to Mutegude Shopping Centre since the 24th of October 2016.[8] In order to get water supply, his family travels one kilometre away to a borehole, situated opposite the Rutendo Town Council Administration office where water seekers pay US$1 to have access to it. Almost all the time, they take close to two hours to access it because of the long queue from thirsty residents.[9] The picture below that was taken on the 19th of April 2017 shows residents largely comprised of women, and children queuing for water at a borehole which was sunk by a well-wisher in the area.

Previously the situation was better since they were offered free water by the Rutendo Islamic Centre before it was forced to stop by some government authorities.[10]

In the absence of water supply, the situation would have been better if the local authority had not refused well-wishers who wanted to drill boreholes in the suburbs. The first attempt was made by Mr. Matorino, who was born and bred in Redcliff and felt that he wanted to plough back into the community that groomed him. A few boreholes were sunk in Torwood and it is alleged that the local authority and politicians in the area stopped him. To that end, boreholes that were planned for Simbi Park and some parts of Rutendo were stopped.[11] It is unfortunate that the residents of Redcliff have gone for so long without water supply yet the local authority continues to demand payment without supplying water indicates that the authority is both despotic and tyrannical.

The majority of the residents visited have dug wells at their houses, without which the situation would have been dire. Concerns were raised that most of the wells are shallow and contaminated with sewer, and other chemical contaminants from near-by industrial establishments. There are also many cases in which children drowned and died when they fell into these death traps.

2.2  Causes of the Water Crisis

First and foremost, it is important to highlight at the outset that the situation obtaining clearly demonstrates the local authority’s lack of capacity to provide effective water management to its residents. Many views were expressed on the causes of the water crisis in Redcliff, starting with the view that the City of Kwekwe and its management have been too cruel to disconnect water supply to the Municipality of Redcliff for the love of money at the detriment of human life. There would be nothing wrong for the City of Kwekwe to institute legal proceedings against the Municipality of Redcliff to recover the unpaid water bills but disconnecting water supply and causing suffering on the people shows the leadership’s insensitivity to human dignity. It is alleged that on the 9th of April 2017, the Honourable Mayor of the Municipality of Redcliff, addressed residents and informed them that they owed the City of Kwekwe millions of dollars in unpaid water bills and as a result they were disconnected by Kwekwe. [12]

The local authority emphasises that the residents were to blame for the water crisis since they were not paying for the water that they consume. It is alleged that the local authority expects around US$600,000 per month yet they are only receiving around US$30,000. As a result, the local authority has failed to pay its obligations to the City of Kwekwe, where the debt is now around US$2 million. The total unpaid water bills from the residents have reached a whopping US$8 million.[13]

The Mayor of the City of Kwekwe told Chitumba (2017) of the Chronicle Newspaper that the problem was attributed to a broken down pump as well as water restrictions from ZINWA because of an unpaid raw water bill of US$1.2 million.[14]

Water to Redcliff residents follow a long and winding process. According to the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (2015), such a water supply chain is not sustainable. The Municipality gets its water from the City of Kwekwe, which in turn buys raw water from ZINWA.  Initially, the water supply chain was even longer since the Municipality was buying its water from ZISCO Steel, after which ZISCO would have bought the same from the City of Kwekwe. At each stage of the water supply process, expenses were increasing resulting in residents in Redcliff buying it (water) more expensively as compared to residents of Kwekwe.

Furthermore, it would be a remiss of this research if it is not highlighted that some problems bedevilling local authorities are caused by senior civil servants who protect local authority staff no matter the nature or gravity of the problems at hand. A meeting with residents’ associations revealed that some local authority staff and politicians boast of protection from higher offices. It is alleged that when the petition attached hereto, was served one of the politicians was quoted saying that his supporters in higher offices will simply put it in the bin and he is not worried at all. Adding salt to injury, there were attempts to pour water on the petitioners and demonstrators[15]

 

2.3  Selling Water to Desperate Water Seekers

It is a reality that water was being sold to desperate residents. Among individuals selling water included senior public officials. Water was being sold under the guise of recouping electricity and other costs. The following spots were identified:

  • Residents were paying US$1 to get water at a borehole opposite the local authority’s administration office in Rutendo Township. It is alleged that the money was given to the Borehole Committee and it is meant for servicing the same;
  • Some individuals were selling clean water at a price of US$10 per 200 litre drum and dirty water for construction at a rate of US$5 per 200 litre drum;
  • It has been claimed that Rutendo Primary School was allegedly charging for electricity and not for water. Names of all individuals who pay are entered in a register and the access to water is strictly for all those who pay to the school.

 

There were other entities that were giving free water before being allegedly stopped by the local authority. The following is part of the list thereof;

  • The Rutendo Islamic Centre was forced to stop giving water to residents for free. A visit made on the 19th of April 2017 shows that the Centre had complied and stopped giving water to residents;
  • Nyaradzo Funeral Services in Redcliff was stopped;
  • Also forced to stop drilling boreholes for free was the said Mr. Matorino, who was drilling boreholes as part of efforts to pay back to the community that groomed him;
  • The Emirates Foundation allegedly drilled a borehole in Simbi Park close to the shops but the drilling was allegedly stopped;
  • It is also alleged that there was a certain politician known as Chinhara who drilled some boreholes during political campaigns as part of efforts to win hearts. It is said that when he lost, he surrendered the boreholes to the local authority but these boreholes were not maintained until they all broke down. However, some desperate residents repaired the boreholes on their own and using own resources;
  • Many individuals who did not want to be named in this report were stopped by the local authority though some of them continued giving free water since water cannot be denied to anyone as part of the Zimbabwean norms and values ‘ubuntu’.

 

2.4  Health Implications of the Water Crisis

The Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association (2017) in its Media Release of 18 April 2017, claims that on the 10th of December 2016, there was a typhoid outbreak in Redcliff resulting in more than 117 cases of typhoid reported. Desperate residents have been left with no option but to resort to unprotected water sources.

 

Many residents did not have water in their toilets and were using near-by bushes to relieve/ease themselves. A bush along the railway line close to Simbi Park is a clear testimony of this problem.  This is against concerted efforts by the Government of Zimbabwe dissuading open defecation.

 

In such cases, the local authority would be expected to bring water bowsers but the local authority has not done anything.

 

It is factual that the local authority and the company that put the sewer pipes in Rutendo in the Magamba area messed up. I am failing to understand why they put sewer pipes in such a manner that sewer doesn’t flow. If I become the Minister of Local Government today, I will demand an investigation and where possible demand that all those who were there then compensate the government from their own pockets. Maybe they paid bribes and did a shoddy job knowing very well that the inspectors cannot complain after receiving bribe money.

(Testimony from a resident of Magamba area in Rutendo, Simbi Park, Redcliff)

In many suburbs, raw sewer was seen flowing all over and residents in an area known as Magamba which is inhabited by war veterans is the most affected. A resident in the area did not have nice words for residents of the Magamba area as well as local authority engineers and a company that was given the tender to put sewer pipes. [16]

 

 

 

2.5  Attitude of the Local Authority

The majority of the residents interviewed pointed out that the local authority is not sensitive to the plight of the residents but is rather too rude. On the 19th of April 2017, representatives of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association complained that the conduct of one of the senior leaders was unacceptable. It is alleged that he almost mockingly poured water that he was drinking to the demonstrators.[17] Another complaint is that water was only supplied to areas where senior government officials reside.  The Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association (2017) in its Media Release of 18 April 2017, complain that “… leadership of the local authority boasts through claims that they are well connected to senior government officials to such an extent that all efforts made by residents will not bring any results. Indeed there is a feeling that there are some senior government officials and ministers who back the local authority regardless of pathetic service delivery, corruption and mal-administration”. In keeping thereof, a local authority should be people centered and it is sad that the residents are treated with the lack of respect yet the local authorities themselves are specifically created to serve these people.

3.     IMPLICATIONS OF THE REDCLIFF WATER CRISIS

Apart of being the leading cause of water-borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid to name but a few, the water crisis significantly affects development. The following are some of the implications of the problem if it is not curbed:

  • Typhoid and Cholera. In December 2017, 117 cases of typhoid were allegedly reported in the town due to contaminated water;
  • Use of alternative toilets: Toilets have no running water and residents are resorting to the use of bushes to ease themselves. The railway line passing through Simbi Park and Rutendo is an ‘eyesore’;
  • Scares away investors: What is undeniable is that no investor wants to invest in a town where there is no water;
  • Employers find it difficult to retain staff: An employee recently transferred to Redcliff refused the transfer because of water challenges in the town. On the other side, another police officer staying in Rutendo was contemplating approaching the employer seeking a transfer to another town where there is water;
  • Affects business: Many businesses operating in the town were finding it difficult to operate. A visit to a night club in one of the suburbs made startling findings of unflushed faeces in the toilet. This again could trigger a health disaster;
  • Trigger civil strife: The demonstration against the water crisis speaks volumes about an impending civil strife if the problem is not immediately addressed.
  • Reduces confidence in the leadership: Confidence in the leadership is at its lowest. This explains why the petition from the residents has called for the resignation of the entire leadership of the local authority.

4.     PROPOSED SOLUTIONS

It appears that the local authority is already on the hunt for investors to help in the setting up of a water treatment plant. [18] This would be the most sustainable solution, though it is hampered by resource constraints. A resident of Redcliff who chose to remain anonymous supported the idea and went further to say that the local authority could start by refurbishing the old infrastructure that was being used by ZISCO Steel to tap on water from Cactus dam.[19] However, he stated that the ZISCO water infrastructure had a very strong water pump, which was stolen. However, the majority of former employees of ZISCO confess to know who stole it and where it is.[20] Residents and ratepayers associations in Redcliff indicated that in the interim it was important for the City of Kwekwe to supply water directly and bill the residents. This solution was made based on the revelations that money paid by the residents was not being remitted to the City of Kwekwe by the Municipality of Redcliff.[21] On the other side, the local authority is making efforts to mobilize money to clear the water debt. Each household is being forced to pay between US$10 and US$20 per month in order the raise the money needed.[22]

5.     CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

What is undeniable is the fact that Redcliff water crisis speaks volumes about the lack of capacity within the rank and file of the local authority to come up with a permanent solution to the problem, such as setting up its own water treatment plant.[23] Relying on water supply from the City of Kwekwe is not only unsustainable but is expensive for the residents. The other perspective is to accept the reality that there is no shortage of water in Kwekwe where it is drawn from but that the Municipality of Redcliff has been disconnected by the City of Kwekwe for non-payment of water bills. This brings a plethora of legal issues that need answers. The following are some of the legal questions that need answers:

  • Are water disconnections legal in the context of the international law, new Constitution as well as new court precedents such as Mushoriwa v City of Harare HH 195/14 and Hove v City of Harare HH205/16 among others?
  • Is it legal for a local authority to disconnect water supply before following the due process of the law, in cases where the bills themselves are in dispute?
  • Is ZINWA allowed to disconnect water supply for non-payment of bills for raw water that it sells to the local authorities?
  • How relevant is ZINWA in the water supply chain in Zimbabwe?

 

In keeping with the above, it is high time that the Zimbabwean legal profession pronounces itself on the subject. In Redcliff, it is alleged that some innocent residents died as a result of water borne diseases and in December 2016 alone more than 117 cases of typhoid were reported.

As a way forward, one will be convinced to agree with the residents in their petition of 19 April 2017 that the leadership of the local authority has failed as the Honourable Mayor was quoted on the 19th of April 2017 admitting failure. Furthermore, in the public interest, an Interim Commission should be appointed to run the affairs of the town pending other permanent arrangements.

The following are some of the areas linked to water and sanitation that should be investigated or explored:

  • An all-stakeholder meeting involving the City of Kwekwe, Municipality of Redcliff. ZINWA, Resident associations, the private sector, the health sector and investors to name but a few, should be organised;
  • Transparency linked to the awarding of the tender to the company that is renovating the sewerage plant situated close to the residence quarters of employees of the Zimbabwe Republic Police;
  • Transparency linked to the awarding of the tender to a company that renovated Torwood toilets;
  • The rationale of the stop order facility through which local authority staff have agreed with the management to collect and pocket money for water bills at the detriment of undermining the local authority’s revenue collecting base;
  • The selling of water by different stakeholders, including local authority staff;

 


Annexes

1.     Residents Petition

PETITION TO THE HONOURABLE MAYOR, COUNCILLORS AND MANAGEMENT OF THE MUNICIPALITY OF REDCLIFF AS WELL AS THE SENIOR MANAGEMENT OF THE MINISTRY OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT

(19 April 2017)

We, the undersigned residents, ratepayers and other stakeholders residing in Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway, do hereby petition the Honourable Mayor, Councillors and the Management of the Municipality of Redcliff, (hereinafter referred to as the local authority), as well as the Senior Management of the Ministry of Local Government, calling upon them to urgently address the following issues:

  1. Water Crisis: Section 77 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, recognize that every person has the right to safe, clean and potable water and to achieve this the State must take reasonable legislative and other measures to achieve the progressive realization of this right. However, in Redcliff, (excluding the areas where the Mayor and some senior local authority staff stay), we have gone for months without water. Lack of water makes our town unhygienic and may trigger an outburst of diseases. For instance on the 10th of December 2016, there was a typhoid outbreak in Redcliff resulting in more than 117 cases of typhoid reported. Adding misery and giving a gloomy picture towards a solution to the water crisis, on the 9th day of April 2017, the Honourable Mayor, confessed to all of us that he had failed to find a solution to the water crisis.
  2. Lack of Accountability of monies collected as levies: Previous petitions to the local authority demanding accountability of the US$10 special levy as well the education levy failed to elicit a positive response from the local authority. We want to know how much was collected as well as how much of it was spent and on what. We are demanding access to the information, which we know that we are all entitled to through reference to Section 63 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, which says that “Every Zimbabwean citizen or permanent resident, including juristic persons and the Zimbabwean media, has the right of access to any information held by the State or by any institution or agency of government at every level, in so far as the information is required in the interests of public accountability”. In keeping thereof, we are demanding that you give us all the information, which we have requested. Transparency must be fostered by providing the public with timely, accessible and accurate information, which we do not see in the local authority
  3. Poor Service Delivery (referring to damaged and unrepaired roads, absence of public lighting, neglected garbage collection: We rate service delivery by the local authority as one of the poorest in the country. Roads facilitate the free movement of people, goods and services yet they are very poor. A total of 12 tower lights are all not working. Furthermore, the town is an ‘eyesore’ due to uncollected garbage. What surprises us most is the fact that you charge us for all these non-existent services. We are thus demanding that the local authority improves in these areas.
  4. Stop reprisals against the leadership of resident associations: We have noted with great concern that there are increased number of reprisals against the leadership of resident associations in Redcliff, which must be stopped immediately. Apart from the court actions, some of our leaders have also been victims of verbal attacks by the local authority which is totally unacceptable.

Our Recommendations:

In keeping with the above, we herby submit the following recommendations to the local authority as well as senior management in the Ministry of Local Government:

  1. Resignation of the Mayor, Councillors and Management of the local authority: What cannot be denied is the fact that the local authority has failed to run the local authority and manage the affairs of the people in Redcliff. Our situation is becoming worse by the day. This explains why we are asking the Mayor, Councillors and Management of the local authority to resign.
  2. Appointing a Commission to run the affairs of the local authority: It is our request to the Ministry of Local Government to appoint a Commission to run the local authority. This will not be the first in the country since other cities such as Gweru are being run by Commissions.
  3. Set up a Commission of Enquiry into the Management of Funds at the Municipality, corruption and other irregularities: Ignoring public calls to investigate the local authority is self-defeating and could be one of the reasons why the local authority is in its current messy. A Commission of Enquiry should be set up to investigate a number of issues that include but not limited to: adherence to good practices on financial management; accountability of levies (special and education levy), accountability of money received from the sale of stands, award of tenders (e.g. renovation of Torwood toilet;, servicing of stands etc);, use of stop order facilities and allowing local authority staff to collect and pocket money for water and utility bills; ,
  4. City of Kwekwe / ZINWA to take-over water management: The local authority has failed to address the water crisis, and we are thus asking the City of Kwekwe/ ZINWA to take over and start managing the water situation in the town.

We know that it is within our rights through Section 59 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No. 20) Act 2013, to demonstrate and to present this petition, in a peaceful manner which we have demonstrated.

We, hereby sign this petition and asking the Mayor, Councillors and Management of the local authority as well as the senior management under the Ministry of Local Government to take appropriate action as prayed above.

 

 

2.     Media Release from the Residents Association

Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association

0716868831 / 0776185624/ 0775534543

______________________________________________________________________________

DEMONSTRATION AGAINST DEPLORABLE SERVICE DELIVERY, WATER CRISIS AND CORRUPTION IN REDCLIFF

(18 April 2017)

On the 19th of April 2017, residents, ratepayers and other stakeholders residing in Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway, will be demonstrating against the water crisis that has seen the suburbs going for at least 5 months without water in their houses. On the 10th of December 2016, there was a typhoid outbreak in Redcliff resulting in more than 117 cases of typhoid reported.  The demonstrators were provoked by the Honourable Mayor of Redcliff, who openly confessed on the 9th of April 2017 that he and his full Council as well as the Management of the Municipality of Redcliff had failed to resolve the water crisis. In other words, the Mayor was hopeless, which means that the water crisis was going to continue and another diseases is feared since residents have resorted to unprotected water sources. When a leader gives up the fight, this demoralizes the rest of his team and hence the call that he immediately resigns other than clinging to power and that the Ministry of Local Government sets up a Commission to run the affairs of the town.

On the 19th of April 2017, the demonstrators will meet at Dollar Shopping Centre as well as Mutegude Shopping Centre situated in Rutendo Township of Redcliff in Zimbabwe at 7:00 a.m, where they will peacefully march to the Civic Centre to present a petition signed by residents, ratepayers and other stakeholders in the town.

Apart from the water crisis, the residents decried the lack of accountability of monies collected as levies, poor service delivery; and increased  reprisals against the leadership of resident associations by the local authority. It is alleged that all those speaking out against deplorable service delivery, corruption and lack of accountability are often attacked and targeted by the local authority, which the petitioners said must be stopped.

The leadership of the local authority boasts through claims that they are well connected to senior government officials to such an extent that all efforts made by residents will not bring any results. Indeed there is a feeling that there are some senior government officials and ministers who back the local authority regardless of pathetic service delivery, corruption and mal-administration.

On the menu of recommendations made include:

  1. The resignation of the Mayor, Councillors and Management of the local authority;
  2. The appointment of a Commission to run the affairs of the local authority;
  3. The setting up of a Commission of Enquiry into the management of Funds at the Municipality, corruption and other irregularities: and
  4. Plea to the City of Kwekwe / ZINWA that they take-over water management of the small town:

For Media Enquiries Call:

0716868831 / 0776185624/ 0775534543 (Representatives of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association and Organisers of the Demonstration)

[1] Section 77 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No.20) Act 2013

[2] Resolution 64/292: The human right to water and sanitation”. United Nations. August 2010. Retrieved 28 April 2017.

[3] The Universal Declaration on Human Rights (UDHR) of 1948 and International Covenant on Economic Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) of 1966 implicitly recognises this right. Other treaties that explicitly recognize the right include the 1979 Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). The first resolutions about the HRWS were passed by the UN General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council in 2010.

[4] Section 77 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No.20) Act 2013

[5] Resident Video Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M. (19th April 2017).

[6] Ibid

[7] Refer to the Annex -1- being the Petition which was signed

[8] Resident. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M. (19th April 2017).

[9] Ibid

[10] Member of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association

. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (19th April 2017).

[11] Member of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association

. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (19th April 2017).

[12] ibid

[13] Chitumba, P (2017) Thirsty Redcliff residents demand Mayor’s resignation. [online] Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/thirsty-redcliff-residents-demand-mayors-resignation/ [Accessed on 24 April 2017]

[14] ibid

[15] Members of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association .  Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (19th April 2017).

[16] Resident of the Magamba area. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M. (19th April 2017).

[17] Members of the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association

. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (19th April 2017).

[18] Chikari, A (2017) Redcliff Town seeks water treatment plan investors. [online] Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/redcliff-town-seeks-water-treatment-plant-investors/ [Accessed on 24 April 2017]

[19] Resident. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (23rd of  April 2017).

[20] ibid

[21] Members of TORRA and the Rutendo, Simbi Park and Ridgeway Residents and Ratepayers Association. Interviewed by: Chinhamo, O. and Bidi, M (19th April 2017).

[22] Chikari, A (2017). Redcliff charges residents flat fee for water. [online]. Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/redcliff-charges-residents-flat-fee-for-water/ [Accessed on 24 April 2017]

[23] Chikari, A (2017) Redcliff Town seeks water treatment plan investors. [online] Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/redcliff-town-seeks-water-treatment-plant-investors/ [Accessed on 24 April 2017]

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MEDIA RELEASE: GEORGE CHARAMBA MUST STOP INTIMIDATING THE ZIMBABWE ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION

14 June 2016

MEDIA RELEASE: GEORGE CHARAMBA MUST STOP INTIMIDATING THE ZIMBABWE ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION

The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) has noted with great concern Zimbabwean government attacks against the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC). Mr. George Charamba, who is doubling as the Press Secretary in the President’s Office as well as the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, is making headlines consistently attacking ZACC for carrying out its work as well as politicising the anti-corruption agenda. Considering the devastating impact of corruption on national development and how corruption may derail all efforts towards the ZimAsset Agenda, Mr. Charamba should have been motivating anti-corruption bodies instead of weakening them. The country needs corruption detesting leaders who ‘walk the talk’ against corruption. As long as there is no political will, the country will remain under the debilitating yoke of corruption. Mr. Alouis Munyaradzi Chaumba indicated that ZACC should be given an opportunity to execute its mandate free from interference and without fear or favour. “Let us all support ZACC and give it an opportunity to execute its mandate without fearing that George Charamba will attack it. Mr. Charamba should not intimidate the Commission from carrying out its constitutional mandate. We all now understand why the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe has not been interested in building the capacity of ZACC to execute its mandate in the most effective and efficient manner. It is clear that some individuals feel threatened by ZACC and wants to kill it again. They have done it before and wants to continue making the Commission weak. Kuvhunduka chati kwatara hunge uine katurike” He says.

 

In 2016, there has been an onslaught against the ZACC commissioners and managers over various allegations. Whilst, ZACC is urged to be exemplary, the recent attacks by the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe, represented by George Charamba, do not or at all help the country in moving forward with its anti-corruption agenda.

 

For more information kindly call Munyaradzi Chaumba (0773302830).

 

 

Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Number 1

Corner Jacaranda Avenue & Fifth Avenue

  1. O. Box 93

Kwekwe

Zimbabwe

 

Tel: +263 (0) 55 25235

Mobile: +263(0)773302830

Mobile: +263(0)717152535

e-mail: actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

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Media Release: The Zimbabwe Republic Police told to Discontinue Spot Fines: A recent Study has Revealed

The Zimbabwe Republic Police told to Discontinue Spot Fines: A recent Study has Revealed

Kwekwe, Zimbabwe: A recent survey conducted by the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa has revealed that motorists are forced by the Zimbabwe Republic Police to pay spot fines regardless of their innocence due to threats against them. It was revealed in the study that motorists pay spot fines to avoid having their drivers’ licences and permits seized, to avoid inconveniences and being delayed, to prevent their vehicles from being impounded, and to prevent their vehicles from being surrendered to Vehicle Inspectorate Department (VID). Furthermore, some motorists lost drivers’ licences and permits when they were confiscated by the police after they failed to pay the spot fines needed.

Apart from the practice of spot fines being illegal and unconstitutional, motorists insisted that spot fines fuel corruption because of various reasons such as:

  • The bribe money demanded by the police is often less than the gazetted traffic fines and motorists prefer paying bribes since that will be a huge saving on their part;
  • The salaries of police officers are very low and they demand bribes to supplement their salaries;
  • Motorists are time conscious and do not want to be inconvenienced and prefer paying bribes to drive hassle-free;
  • Refusal to pay often leads to vehicles being impounded and taken to VID for mechanical checks;
  • Motorists will not have the stipulated spot fines and therefore opt for a lesser amounts;

Mr. Obert Chinhamo, the Programmes Director of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa castigated the Zimbabwe Republic Police for being hypocritical in the fight against corruption. “What amazes me is that the police pretends to be fighting corruption and crime on one side and on the other side they are promoting a practice that fuels corruption and criminality. Spot fines fuel corruption and the link is very clear. Legal experts have also spoken and said that spot fines are illegal and unconstitutional. A constitutional body such as the Zimbabwe Republic Police therefore should move away from anything that is illegal and unconstitutional. The insistence on spots fines is unconstitutional and therefore should be discontinued” he says.

Motorists gave numerous recommendations. One key recommendation is that the ticketing system should be re-introduced. The re-introduction of the tickets will allow motorists to pay the fines within seven (7) days or face prosecution. Furthermore, motorists pointed out that police officers should not be allowed to receive cash at checkpoints but rather motorists should pay through the bank, Ecocash or at police stations. In addition, motorists recommended that spot fines should be discontinued considering that they are deemed to be not only illegal but they are unconstitutional.

 

Mr. Chaumba the Regional Coordinator of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa warned the Zimbabwe Republic Police that it is fact losing its credibility because of its insistence on spot fines and harbouring bribe thirsty police officers. Furthermore, he indicated that police checkpoints are being used as cash cows by traffic police officers. “Traffic police are the richest among other sections within the police. That is clear indication that they have extra income from somewhere. I do not know when last lifestyle audits were carried out but I insist these should be carried out as a matter of urgency. I strongly urge the management of the police to carry out these audits since some police officers have accumulated wealth which they cannot justify. Also insistence on a practice that illegal and unconstitutional tarnishes the image of the police. ” he says.

The survey report is available on request and has also been uploaded to the site. www.anticorruptiontrust.org

For more information, please contact

Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa), 1 Jacaranda Avenue, P. O. Box 93, Kwekwe, Zimbabwe, Tel: +263 (0) 55 25235, Mobile: +263 (0)77 33 02 830, (Chaumba) Mobile: +263 (0)78 449 0660 (Chinhamo), e-mail: actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

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Media Release: The Zimbabwe Republic Police told to Discontinue Spot Fines: A recent Study has Revealed

Kwekwe, Zimbabwe: A recent survey conducted by the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa has revealed that motorists are forced by the Zimbabwe Republic Police to pay spot fines regardless of their innocence due to threats against them. It was revealed in the study that motorists pay spot fines to avoid having their drivers’ licences and permits seized, to avoid inconveniences and being delayed, to prevent their vehicles from being impounded, and to prevent their vehicles from being surrendered to Vehicle Inspectorate Department (VID). Furthermore, some motorists lost drivers’ licences and permits when they were confiscated by the police after they failed to pay the spot fines needed.
Apart from the practice of spot fines being illegal and unconstitutional, motorists insisted that spot fines fuel corruption because of various reasons such as:
• The bribe money demanded by the police is often less than the gazetted traffic fines and motorists prefer paying bribes since that will be a huge saving on their part;
• The salaries of police officers are very low and they demand bribes to supplement their salaries;
• Motorists are time conscious and do not want to be inconvenienced and prefer paying bribes to drive hassle-free;
• Refusal to pay often leads to vehicles being impounded and taken to VID for mechanical checks;
• Motorists will not have the stipulated spot fines and therefore opt for a lesser amounts;
Mr. Obert Chinhamo, the Programmes Director of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa castigated the Zimbabwe Republic Police for being hypocritical in the fight against corruption. “What amazes me is that the police pretends to be fighting corruption and crime on one side and on the other side they are promoting a practice that fuels corruption and criminality. Spot fines fuel corruption and the link is very clear. Legal experts have also spoken and said that spot fines are illegal and unconstitutional. A constitutional body such as the Zimbabwe Republic Police therefore should move away from anything that is illegal and unconstitutional. The insistence on spots fines is unconstitutional and therefore should be discontinued” he says.
Motorists gave numerous recommendations. One key recommendation is that the ticketing system should be re-introduced. The re-introduction of the tickets will allow motorists to pay the fines within seven (7) days or face prosecution. Furthermore, motorists pointed out that police officers should not be allowed to receive cash at checkpoints but rather motorists should pay through the bank, Ecocash or at police stations. In addition, motorists recommended that spot fines should be discontinued considering that they are deemed to be not only illegal but they are unconstitutional.

Mr. Chaumba the Regional Coordinator of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa warned the Zimbabwe Republic Police that it is fact losing its credibility because of its insistence on spot fines and harbouring bribe thirsty police officers. Furthermore, he indicated that police checkpoints are being used as cash cows by traffic police officers. “Traffic police are the richest among other sections within the police. That is clear indication that they have extra income from somewhere. I do not know when last lifestyle audits were carried out but I insist these should be carried out as a matter of urgency. I strongly urge the management of the police to carry out these audits since some police officers have accumulated wealth which they cannot justify. Also insistence on a practice that illegal and unconstitutional tarnishes the image of the police. ” he says.
The survey report is available on request and has also been uploaded to the site. http://www.anticorruptiontrust.org
For more information, please contact
Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa), 1 Jacaranda Avenue, P. O. Box 93, Kwekwe, Zimbabwe, Tel: +263 (0) 55 25235, Mobile: +263 (0)77 33 02 830, (Chaumba) Mobile: +263 (0)78 449 0660 (Chinhamo), e-mail: actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

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ACT-Southern Africa urges Delta Corporation in Zimbabwe to be responsible in the Disposal of 1 Litre Super Chibuku Containers

In an move to persuade the Delta Corporation, which is a national brewer of the popular Super Chibuku opaque beer, the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa wrote to its General Manager on the 4th of January 2016 asking the Corporation to remove plastic empty containers that were an eyesore to the Zimbabwean environment. The letter signed by Mr. Obert Chinhamo of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa was also copied to the police and local authorities. The letter reads that “….the plastic containers are posing a serious threat to the environment for the contemporary (current) and the future generations”. The organisation did not only highlight the problem but also made a number of recommendations such as setting up community-based recycling projects, giving the unemployed youths an opportunity to generate income for themselves through collecting the containers as well as launching a national cleaning campaign.  For more information or comments please contact Mr. Obert Chinhamo on Number 1 Jacaranda Steet, P.O.Box 93, Kwekwe, Tel: 055-25235, Mobile: 0784490660

 

 

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Kwekwe Sets Up an Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group

Terms of Reference of the Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group

  1. Introduction

The Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (ACSDM-VAG) is a group of twenty (20) community members set up by the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) to increase the likelihood of detection, reporting and punishment for corruption and poor service delivery and to increase options available to victims of corruption and poor service delivery.

Furthermore, the ACSDM-VAG contributes to improved public empowerment by involving citizens in enforcing anti-corruption measures and improving service delivery. The setting up of ACSDM-VAGs is a response to high levels of corruption and poor service delivery in both urban and rural areas in Zimbabwe.

The ACSDM-VAGs are set up under the Community Action against Corruption and Poor Service Delivery in Zimbabwe Project, which seeks to actively involve community members in the fight against corruption and poor service delivery.

  1. Project Scope

The activities of the Kwekwe ACSDM-VAG cover the Kwekwe district which includes Redcliff, Kwekwe, Silobela and Zhombe.

  1. Activities of the ACSDM-VAG

The ACSDM-VAG acts as a watchdog against corruption and poor service delivery and works closely with other stakeholders in preventing and combating corruption and improving service delivery in a number of sectors that include health, and education among others. Apart from whistle blowing functions, public education and reporting corruption, the ACSDM-VAG also monitors and reports on service delivery.

The KACSG-VAG is responsible for:

-Whistleblowing:

Disclosing or reporting of wrongdoing, including but not limited to corruption; criminal offences; breaches of legal obligation; miscarriages of justice; specific dangers to public health, safety or the environment; abuse of authority; unauthorised use of public funds or property; gross waste or mismanagement; conflict of interest; and acts to cover up of any of these.

– Public Education:

Members of the CACSDM-VAG are responsible for raising awareness against corruption, maladministration and poor service delivery within their communities. Members are empowered to carry out this function in the most effective and efficient manner.

– Reporting Corruption:

Acts of corruption and their prosecution are documented and reported to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC), the Zimbabwe Republic Police and other competent authorities.

The CACSDM-VAG will be given training on how to gather evidence and where possible equipped with adequate tools for gathering evidence.

– Research:

The CACSDM-VAG carries out research on corruption and service delivery matters and use the findings thereof for advocacy purposes

– Desisting from Corruption:

Members of the CACSDM-VAG are themselves be encouraged to refrain from corruption and this is one of their key activities. Members conscientise each other against corruption and report corruption whenever and wherever it occurs.

– Monitoring Service Delivery and Maladministration:

Members of the CACSDM-VAG monitor and report on service delivery in the health, water, and education sectors among others. Reports on service delivery are used to facilitate evidence informed decisions and the for advocacy purposes.

-Monitoring action taken on reported corruption and poor service delivery cases:

The CACSDM-VAG closely monitors action taken by authorities on reported cases. Where no action is taken the CACSDM-VAG resorts to other options that include but not limited to litigation and civil disobedience.

– Advocacy:

Based on evidence collected the CACSDM-VAG carries a number of advocacy activities aimed at the reduction of corruption and improved service delivery.

-Management of the ACSDM-VAG

The ACSDM-VAG carries out its work through a Committee that comprises of a Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary, Vice Secretary, Organising Secretary, Vice Organising Secretary, Coordinator Public Education, Vice Coordinator Public Education, Coordinator- Service Delivery and Vice Coordinator- Service Delivery and Committee members. All reports are presented to the ACSDM-VAG for endorsed before any action is taken. The ACSDM-VAG gets advice from the ACT-Southern Africa and a legal team that was set up to advise it as well as to give legal advice to victims of corruption and poor service delivery.

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POLICE CORRUPTION THREATENING THE SURVIVAL OF SMALL TO MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (SMES) IN KWEKWE AND REDCLIFF IN ZIMBABWE

REPORT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

POLICE CORRUPTION THREATENING THE SURVIVAL OF SMALL TO MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (SMES) IN KWEKWE AND REDCLIFF IN ZIMBABWE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Desai House

Second Floor

N/Mandela Avenue

P.O.Box 93

Kwekwe

Zimbabwe

Tel:                  +263 (0) 717152535

e-mail:             actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Acknowledgements. 3

Executive Summary.. 4

  1. Introduction and Background Information.. 6

1.1         Introduction. 6

1.2         Focus of the Report. 6

  1. Methodology.. 7
  2. Key Findings. 7

3.1         City of Kwekwe Police Stealing from SMEs in the Transport Sector. 7

3.2         City of Kwekwe Police Officers Punishing SMEs Refusing to Pay Bribes. 7

3.3         Zimbabwe Republic Police and SMEs in the Transport Sector. 8

3.4         The Police Contributing to Survival Problems faced by SMEs and Closures. 9

3.5         Loopholes Exploited by the Police in Concealing Proceeds of Corruption. 10

3.6         Clues on Illicit Accumulation of Wealth through Proceeds of Corruption. 11

  1. Conclusion and Recommendations. 11

4.1         Conclusion. 11

4.2         Recommendations. 12
 

Acknowledgements

© 2014. Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Desai House

N/Mandela Avenue

Second Floor

First Door

  1. O. Box 93

Kwekwe

Zimbabwe

Telephone:      +263717152535

e-mail:           actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

All rights reserved.

The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa is a Trust that was registered in 2004 in Harare and the Registration Protocol Number is MA147/2004.

The report is a product of research that was conducted by the Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG). The KACSDM-VAG monitors, reports and takes action against corruption and poor service delivery in Kwekwe, Redcliff, Silobela and Zhombe.

The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa would like to extend its appreciation to members of the KACSDM-VAG who include: Rev. Jackie Ngulube, Alfred. Y. Mnkandla, Tafadzwa Gambiza, Langton Mutevera, Tabita Karonga, Farayi Mauwa, Kefas Mzambezi, Morgen Chibayamombe, Jenett Sibanda, Fransisca Zvabvirepi, Dennis Chidamajaya, Kokerai Hilario Mapwanya, Dicosta Zimende, Ellah Mutengo, Arnold Phiri, Obert Chinhamo and Fraser Sibanda for their sterling role in monitoring, reporting and taking action against corruption and poor service delivery in Kwekwe, Redcliff, Silobela and Zhombe.

It is hoped that their contribution in exposing corruption by the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police will be a huge boost to the SME sector as well as the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe. The bribe money being pocketed by a few individuals should find its way to the national coffers.

 

Executive Summary

The key finding of this investigation is that the City of Kwekwe (CoK) and the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) are responsible for the turmoil or quagmires facing the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Kwekwe and Redcliff. Unscrupulous members of the ZRP and the CoK police are accused of demanding bribes from motorists, shop owners and vendors, which does not only threaten the survival of SMEs, damage the trust between the people and the police and undermine the government’s revenue collection efforts but also cultivates impunity and cements a culture of corruption in the country. Many people consulted were bothered on who will be left to fight corruption when the law enforcement agents responsible for fighting it are also corrupt? Who shall guard the guard? This finding suggests a jaundiced view of the police being retrogressive and reversing all the gains made towards economic empowerment of the previously marginalized Zimbabweans. These culprits who are enriching themselves under the guise of maintaining of law and order must surely be brought to book.

In this study, it was learnt that the police could be pocketing a minimum of US$780,187.50 per annum from a sample of 285 commuter omnibuses in Kwekwe and Redcliff alone. In the same instance, the government through the Ministry of Finance, could be losing a minimum of US$2,080,500.00 per year from 285 commuter omnibuses only. This excludes all the bribe money received by the CoK police to allow Redcliff bound commuter omnibuses to pick and drop passengers in the Central Business District (CBD). It is this report’s considered opinion that urgent corrective action should be taken in order to rescue the situation. If US$2 million is being lost per annum in small cities such as Kwekwe and Redcliff, the loss being made country-wide is huge.

The assessment picked serious gaps in the monitoring of ZRP traffic police officers whilst on duty since the culprits take advantage of the lack of monitoring to exploit many opportunities at their disposal to hide acts and proceeds of corruption. Police officers from the ZRP drive and park their own personal vehicles at checkpoints. In Redcliff and at ZimBeef or Carswell turn-off two police officers from ZRP were seen staging a checkpoint on their own. The controversial issue of spot-fines force people to admit guilt when they are not to avoid being inconvenienced from their busy schedules. The CoK police, are paid money by shop owners operating without licences and vendors operating from undesignated points, to allow them to continue operating hassle-free. At some outlets selling food, liquor and beverages, these unprincipled CoK police officers enjoy free drinks and food.[1]

The SMEs that refuse to pay bribes are often punished through a spate of exorbitant fines as has been demonstrated through two cases that have been highlighted in this report. In the first case, the CoK police impounded a commuter omnibus and only released it upon payment of US$270. In another case, the CoK refused and/or neglected issuing a shop licence in violation of the Shop Licences Act, Chapter 14:17, which gave the City Police an opportunity to milk the SME of its hard earned income. In this instance, the CoK has many casualties that should claim justice at an appropriate time. Many SMEs have been muscled out of business through the conduct of the CoK.

More shocking is the fact that proceeds of corruption are being used for personal enrichment and the research team was hinted on massive accumulation of wealth by ZRP police officers who drive luxurious private motor vehicles, commuter omnibuses of their own, and other forms of wealth such as houses.  Commuter omnibuses owned by police officers operate hassle-free and the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa will be compiling a list of the commuter omnibuses in order to name and shame the culprits.

In keeping with the above, the following recommendations are made:

  1. All corrupt members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe Police should be closely monitored and where they are found to be corrupt, they should be prosecuted and fired from work;
  2. Members of the SMEs, including all those in the transport sector, should desist from paying bribes since they are equally guilt and should be prosecuted if detected;
  3. The Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe should audit assets and liabilities owned and owed by police officers and demand transparency and accountability on how such wealth was accumulated;
  4. Authorities responsible for SME development, including associations such as the Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises, should carry out assessments of obstacles to SME development in Kwekwe and Redcliff, including documentation of all SMEs that have closed or scaled down due to corruption and flagrant violations of licencing laws and policies by the City of Kwekwe and take decisive corrective action towards addressing them, which may include but not limited to court action;
  5. Motorists, shop owners and members of the public witnessing corruption should document the same and where possible collect evidence such as pictures and videos and forward the same to the police and/or to the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa.

 

1.    Introduction and Background Information

1.1     Introduction

It is well known and documented widely that ‘the more entrepreneurial a country is, the more wealth it becomes.[2] The Zimbabwean government has for a long time been frantically making efforts to empower, its people, the majority of whom are in the category of the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). In line with the Section 2 of the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act (Chapter 14:33) indigenization is a ‘..…deliberate involvement of indigenous Zimbabweans in the economic activities of the country, to which hitherto they had no access, so as to ensure the equitable ownership of the nation’s resources’[3]. The whole idea is to empower these Zimbabweans, which entails ‘ …..the creation of an environment which enhances the performance of economic activities of indigenous Zimbabweans into which they would have been introduced or involved through indigenisation’.[4] As a sign of commitment the government set up the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises whose vision is ‘To be the ‘nerve’ centre for economic growth and empowerment through the development of SMEs in Zimbabwe’.[5] The Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation, affectionately known as ‘Zim Asset’ is geared towards an empowered society and a growing economy.[6] However, all these efforts are being reversed and brought naught through acts of corruption and uncalled for behavior of certain institutions on the ground. This report demonstrates how the CoK and ZRP are part of the problem instead of being agents of the change needed to ensure the realization of the Zim Asset and other critical government efforts towards indigenization and empowerment of the SME sector.

1.2     Focus of the Report

The report zooms on the role of the CoK Police and the ZRP in disempowering the SME sector. While it is acknowledged that the two bodies play a very important role in maintaining law and order, but they are equally responsible and remain accused and blamed for the ailing SME sector due to corruption and predatory tendencies.

2.    Methodology

Consultations were made with the SME sector. This involved interviews with individuals running SMEs and triangulating the information received and subjecting the same to peer review. Efforts were made to witness corruption and capture the culprits through videos which was done in some cases but difficult in others. The findings made in this report captures a true pictures of the situation obtaining in Kwekwe and Redcliff and chances are high that the same findings will be confirmed in future if there is no behavioural change on the part of the CoK and ZRP.

3.    Key Findings

3.1     City of Kwekwe Police Stealing from SMEs in the Transport Sector

Complaints were received from motorists who alleged that municipal police officers demand between Ten and Twenty United States (US$10-US$20) a day from each commuter omnibus to allow them to pick and drop passengers in the Central Business District (CBD). It is alleged that all the vehicles that refuse to pay the bribes are banned from entering the CBD and often clamped when they enter the CBD. The Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises provided a list of commuter omnibuses from Redcliff that are paying the City of Kwekwe municipal officers bribes to be enabled to pick and drop passengers in the CBD.[7]

Interviews made confirm that most of the commuter omnibuses from Redcliff that are allowed to pick and drop passengers in the CBD along Robert Gabriel Mugabe Way are believed to have paid City of Kwekwe police officers. These police officers move around and often congregate opposite the main post office checking and clamping other vehicles that would not have paid. Another spot for the harvesting of proceeds of corruption is an illegal pick-up point close to Fidelity for vehicles plying the Gokwe and Silobela routes.

According to the Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises (2014), approximately 11 commuter omnibuses allegedly pay and these unscrupulous police officers harvest a minimum of US$110 a day or US$40,150 per annum. All this is at the expense of SMEs and the government.

3.2     City of Kwekwe Police Officers Punishing SMEs Refusing to Pay Bribes

The City Police are notorious for victimizing SMEs in the transport sector when they refuse to pay bribes. Consultations made reveal that vehicles are normally clamped and towed by a local break-down service company operating under the name and style of Breakdown Recovery as reflected in a receipt (No.2091) handed over to the research by one of the complainants. After clamping and towing the vehicle to a designated place huge sums of money are normally paid and this forces SMEs to pay bribes or else they will be forced out of business.

In one of the typical cases of punishment, a driver  drove his vehicle from Redcliff and dropped passengers at a designated dropping off point close to the criminal court and opposite NSSA. The vehicle was clamped and he paid as reflected in the table below:

Ref Date Description Amount Paid Receipt Number Remarks
1 11 September 2014 Break-down 30 2091
2 11 September 2014 Declamping 80 Authorised officer stated as 3932-3959
3 11 September 2014 Off-route 80 Authorised officer stated as 3932-3959
4 11 September 2014 Storage 50 Authorised officer stated as 3932-3959
5 11 September 2014 Towing Fee 30 Authorised officer stated as 3932-3959
  Total   270    

It is sad that the victim to police victimization for refusing to pay bribes had serious financial consequences. The SME had no choice but to pay in order to recover the vehicle. Any delays would have resulted in more storage costs. In a normal day, commuter omnibuses plying the Redcliff-Kwekwe route earn around US$70 a day. This means that one will have to work for close to four days in order to recover.  The city police implement such practices in order to deter motorists and force them to pay. In a situation spelt out above, authorities should investigate and punish the culprits and the individual city police officers should also be sued in their personal capacities.

3.3     Zimbabwe Republic Police and SMEs in the Transport Sector

Confessions from drivers and conductors confirm that police officers are receiving money ranging from five United States dollars (US$5) to ten United States dollars (US$10) per day from each commuter omnibus in order to carry out business hassle-free the whole day. This was reported to be the case, at the following areas:

  • Flyover, after the Kwekwe General Hospital along the way to Mvuma before Mbizo turn-off. The police keep a list of all commuter omnibuses and each one of them pays and if not it will not operate;
  • Checkpoint close to Zimasco. Motorists pay a daily fee to operate hassle-free the whole day;
  • ZimBeef or Caswell Beef turnoff as Simbi Park in Redcliff. Motorists pay a daily fee to operate hassle-free;
  • Flyover before Redcliff turn-off from Kwekwe. If a motorists escapes the ZimBeef turn-off without paying it will fall prey to police officers at the checkpoints;
  • Gokwe turn-off close to Amaveni round-about. The officers demand daily fees from commuter omnibuses.

Interviews made confirm that drivers and conductors of commuter omnibuses find it cheaper to pay the daily fee as compared to being ticketed. The money is pocketed by individual police officers at the expense of the government. The following table shows money that is pocketed daily by the police and possible loss incurred by the government.

Ref Checkpoint Possible Number of Commuter Omnibuses Bribe Paid at a rate of between US$5 and US$10  Per Day (Average of US$7.5 Per Day Loss to the National Fiscus calculated at US$20 Per Day
1 Flyover, after the Kwekwe General Hospital along the way to Mvuma before Mbizo turn-off 55 412.5 1,100
2 Checkpoint close to Zimasco 136 1,020 2,720
3 ZimBeef or Caswell Beef turnoff as Simbi Park in Redcliff 60 450 1,200
4 Flyover before Redcliff turn-off from Kwekwe
5 Gokwe turn-off close to Amaveni round-about 34 255 680
Total Per Day 285 2,137.5 5,700
Total Per Year   780,187.5 2,080,500

The table shows clearly that in small cities such as Kwekwe and Redcliff, the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe could be losing close to US$2,080,500 per annum, looking at 285 vehicles only. The loss is much more that US$2 million per year considering the total population of vehicles. This explains why some individual police officers have been managing to buy luxury vehicles and leading flamboyant lifestyles.

In keeping with the above, it would be in best interest of the state to confront the problem of the head-on.  It is said that the police could be pocketing US$780,187.50 meant for SME development.

3.4     The Police Contributing to Survival Problems faced by SMEs and Closures

The City of Kwekwe monitors the adherence to licensing requirements in line with its by-laws and in the process of doing so, there have been many complaints that have been labeled against the conduct of City of Kwekwe / City Police and the Zimbabwe Republic Police in executing their mandate. It is alleged that the police solicits bribes ranging from US$5 to US$10, which disadvantages SMEs, local authorities and the central government in terms of revenue generation. Members of SMEs paying bribes operate hassle-free.

Refusal to pay has consequences. In one of the cases brought to the attention of the Town Clerk of the City of Kwekwe and the Officer In Charge of the Kwekwe Central Police Station on the 22nd of July 2014 an SME paid US$245 through tickets from both the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City Police.[9] Had he paid, a bribe he would have avoided being ticketed.

On the 10th day of July 2014, a joint operation from the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police pounced on a Mr. Phiri / Mr. Gwede whose business was awaiting approval of licence application by the licencing authority. The status quo was explained to the joint operation but they ignored and issued tickets. The Zimbabwe Republic Police issued a ticket of US$30. As punishment, the SME suffered being ticketed by both the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police over the same matter. The SME was punished twice for the same offence, which violated his constitutional rights.

In keeping with the above, the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police allegedly violated the people’s constitutional rights when they issued two tickets for the same offence at the same time. In the same case, the City of Kwekwe approved an application for licence but made it very difficult for the shop owner to get the licence.

3.5     Loopholes Exploited by the Police in Concealing Proceeds of Corruption

The lack of monitoring by the management of the ZRP and the City of Kwekwe facilitates corruption. The following strategies are used to conceal proceeds of corruption:

  • Drivers and Conductors advised to disembark from vehicles: Traffic police officers stop vehicles and demand that drivers and conductors talk to them from outside their cars under trees or at places where passengers can not see and witness bribe money being exchanged. This is a common practice at all checkpoints. The intention of the police and the transport operators is to conceal corruption from being detected.
  • Driving private vehicles to checkpoints: It appears that the police leadership allows police officers to drive their private vehicle to checkpoints. The research team has several pictures of vehicles owned by police officers and parked at checkpoints.
  • Hiding bribe money in near-by bushes: Proceeds of corruption are hidden in near-by bushes and covered by stones among other objects to avoid being detected. There have been several incidents in which these unscrupulous police officers lose their loots to smarter criminals who monitor from a distance and steal the money knowing that they will not report anywhere.
  • Receiving payments via telephone banking: In some cases, the research team learnt that dirty money was being exchanged via ecocash, telecash and onewallet. In the event of being monitored, the supervisors will not find money at the site, which gives a wrong impression of the absence of corruption yet it is rife.
  • Payments in kind: There have been cases in which motorists bring drinks and food. This is a strategy to seek favours from the police which stinks of corruption.

3.6     Clues on Illicit Accumulation of Wealth through Proceeds of Corruption

Evidence of corruption is abundantly available, which if accountability and transparency is demanded many police officers will find it extremely difficult to explain how they accumulated their wealth. The following clue exists to possible illicit accumulation of wealth:

  • Private Vehicles owned by Police Officers: Considering the salaries that police officers earn, it is expected that one will find it extremely difficult to afford a luxurious motor vehicle and maintain it right throughout the years. Fleets of private vehicles owned by police officers speak volumes about supplementary money that they could be getting through corruption.
  • Commuter Omnibuses owned by Police Officers: In Kwekwe and Redcliff, the research team was given a long list of commuter omnibuses owned by police officers. However, for fear of the unknown some of the police officers changed their names and inserted other people’s names but these vehicles are well known.
  • Houses Owned by Police Officers: In the locations several houses owned by police officers were identified and these houses were built without any loans borrowed.

4.    Conclusion and Recommendations

4.1     Conclusion

Whilst the intention of the government is to empower SMEs, it has been observed through this assessment that the practices on the ground are diametrically opposite or opposed to such intentions. What is crystal clear is that the survival of the SME sector is threatened by the conduct of the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police..

It muat be put on record that whilst the maintenance of law and order can not be compromised, the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe police should desist from corruption as this disempowers SMEs and worsens the economic turmoil facing the country. Cor

It is high time that the respective institutions reflect on their practices and support SMEs instead of reaping the little they have for growth.

4.2     Recommendations

In keeping with the above, the following recommendations are made:

  1. All members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe Police should be closely monitored and where they are found to be corrupt, they should be prosecuted and dismissed from work;
  2. Members of the SMEs, including all those in the transport sector, should desist from paying bribes since they are equally guilt and should be prosecuted if detected;
  3. The Zimbabwe Republic Police and the City of Kwekwe should carry out audits of assets and liabilities owned and owed by police officers and demand transparency and accountability on how such wealth was accumulated;
  4. Authorities responsible for SME development, including associations such as the Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises, should carry out assessments of obstacles to SME development in Kwekwe and Redcliff, including documentation of all SMEs that have closed or scaled down due to corruption and flagrant violations of licencing laws and policies by the City of Kwekwe and take decisive corrective action towards addressing them, which may include but not limited to court action;
  5. Motorists, shop owners and members of the public witnessing corruption should document the same and where possible collect evidence such as pictures and videos and forward the same to the police and/or to the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa.

[1] This was observed in September 2014 at ZimBeef turn-off in Simbi Park, Redcliff.

[2] Barrow, C. (2006). The Complete Small Business Guide. Capstone Publishing. United Kingdom

[3] Section 2 of the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act (Chapter 14:33

[4] ibid

[5] Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe (2014). MINISTRY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT. [online]. available at http://www.zim.gov.zw/index.php/ministries/ministry-of-small-and-medium-enterprises. [Accessed on 20 september 2014]

[6] Ministry of Finance (2014). Zim Asset. [online]. Available at http://www.zimtreasury.gov.zw/zim-asset [Accessed on 20 September 2014]

[7] Meeting with the Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises on the 20th of September 2014

[8] Meeting with the Kwekwe Business Association of Small to Medium Enterprises on 23 September 2014

[9] A letter from the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa to the Officer in Charge, Kwekwe Central and the Town Clerk of the City of Kwekwe dated 21 July 2014.

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THE WATER SUPPLY AND SANITATION SITUATION IN REDCLIFF, ZIMBABWE: THE HUMAN RIGHT TO WATER AND SANITATION IN PERIL

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FINAL DRAFT REPORT

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THE WATER SUPPLY AND SANITATION SITUATION IN REDCLIFF, ZIMBABWE: THE HUMAN RIGHT TO WATER AND SANITATION IN PERIL

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Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Desai House

N/Mandela Avenue

Second Floor

First Door

  1. O. Box 93

Kwekwe

Zimbabwe

Telephone:   +263717152535

e-mail:           actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

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Acknowledgements

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© 2014. Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa[1]

Desai House

N/Mandela Avenue

Second Floor

First Door

  1. O. Box 93

Kwekwe

Zimbabwe

Telephone:      +263717152535

e-mail:           actsouthernafrica@gmail.com

All rights reserved.

The report is a product of research conducted by the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) through the Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG), which operates under the ‘Community Action against Corruption and Poor Service Delivery in Kwekwe/Redcliff Project’. The KACSDM-VAG monitors, reports and takes action against corruption and poor service delivery in Kwekwe, Redcliff, Silobela and Zhombe.

Pursuant to the above, ACT-Southern Africa would like to extend its appreciation to members of the KACSDM-VAG for their sterling role in campaigning against corruption, poor service delivery and collecting data that made the assessment possible. The KACSDM-VAG members include: Rev. Jackie Ngulube, Alfred. Y. Mnkandla, Tafadzwa Gambiza, Langton Mutevera, Tabita Karonga, Farayi Mauwa, Kefas Mzambezi, Morgen Chibayamombe, Jenett Sibanda, Fransisca Zvabvirepi, Dennis Chidamajaya, Kokerai Hilario Mapwanya, Dicosta Zimende, Ellah Mutengo, Arnold Phiri, Obert Chinhamo and Fraser Sibanda.

Furthermore, this report was made possible through the contributions of many individuals and institutions who volunteered their time and data to the research team. Last but not least, ACT-Southern Africa would like to thank Mr. Obert Chinhamo for analysing the data, compiling the report and leading the research team.

Executive Summary

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The research was undertaken as a response a public outcry against the water and sanitation crisis bedeviling the town of Redcliff and the widespread concern that the Municipality of Redcliff had ignored and/or neglected its residents’ human right to water and sanitation.

In pursuit thereof, the Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG), recommended an investigation into the extend to which the Municipality of Redcliff was fulfilling its mandate vis-à-vis the provision of regular, safe and affordable water to residents of Redcliff. Linked to the provision of water, is the question of sanitation which the investigating team incorporated as part of the scope of the research.

In keeping thereof, the members of the KACSDM-VAG and the researchers of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa made consultations and made the following findings:

  • The water supply chain was too long and contributing to a plethora of challenges facing the Municipality of Redcliff such as the irregular supply of water, high price of water, and other inconveniences such as water disconnections;
  • The Municipality’s sewage treatment plants were not functioning and raw sewage destined for the Redcliff Treatment Plant had been diverted from the sewage treatment plant and directed towards Nhamo/Rutendo River thereby posing a great danger to animal and human lives;
  • The Municipality of Redcliff had failed and/or neglected to provide regular, accessible, safe and affordable water to its residents or was facing mounting challenges in the provision thereof considering that water supply was irregular at the time of reporting;
  • The Municipality of Redcliff was making the residents of Redcliff poorer by providing water much more expensively as compared to other local authorities such as the City of Kwekwe. In Kwekwe water was provided at twenty five cents (US$0.25) per cubic whilst in Redcliff, residents paid between seventy and eighty cents (US$70- US$0.80) per the same cubic measure. Also unaffordable were costs for water and sewage connections as well as the disconnections thereof;
  • Countless cases of water and sewage leakages were noted and some of these leakages had been neglected for many years and this lack of concern was perturbing. The most hard-hit areas included a section of Rutendo, affectionately known as ‘Magamba’, whose main inhabitants are war veterans;
  • Residents were suffering from water disconnections that were executed without court orders which brought in questions on the legality of such disconnections. The failure to pay for water was partly shouldered on the unaffordability of the water exacerbated by the poverty levels crippling the residents of Redcliff;
  • Refuse was not being collected in some suburbs such as Simbi Park. However, after the release of the draft report for comments, researchers witnessed refuse collection tractors on the 21st of August 2014 collecting refuse in Rutendo but not in Simbi Park;
  • Residents of low density suburbs have always been getting water as compared residents of high density suburbs which raised questions of discrimination between the poor and the rich in the provision of water;
  • Imposition of tariffs without consultation were also noted. This brought about resistance from residents who protested paying the tariffs accusing the local authority of lacking respect and infringing on the provisions of the Urban Councils Act;
  • Water and sewage reticulation plants and equipment were not fully utilized due to neglect, vandalization and lack of resources. The water purification plant owned by ZISCO Steel and drawing water from Cactus dam was not functioning, yet its use could have alleviated the water crisis facing the local authority. It has been alleged that water pumps that were used by ZISCO Steel had either broken down or were stolen;
  • The Municipality was also pocketing money for non-existent services such as public lighting in Simbi, Millennium and some parts of Rutendo. The residents cried foul over such practices;
  • Activities of Steel Makers Zimbabwe at a plant close to Simbi Park in Redcliff were labeled as a danger to human life due contaminants emitted during its process of steel making;
  • Suspicion of possible water theft was raised before the bulky water meter situated close to a cement manufacturing plant and Steel Makers in Redcliff.

Further to the above, residents raised serious concerns on the municipality’s lack of capacity in carrying out its duties and responsibilities in the most effective and efficient manner. Huge gaps in the provision of water and acceptable sanitation speaks volumes about the gaps thereof, which makes it urgent for corrective action to be taken. In support of the finding, in 2010, the Ministry of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development set up a fact finding mission to probe, alleged gross mismanagement of municipality affairs and corruption and the mission is said to have unearthed serious irregularities and made some recommendations. However, residents were not sure on whether or not the recommendations were implemented since there was no straight communication between the municipality and the residents. The lack of transparency in the implementation of the recommendations raised concerns among residents.

In keeping with the research findings, the following recommendations are made:

  • Recommendations to all Stakeholders
    • Relevant stakeholders should organize a meeting or workshop to openly dialogue on the water and sanitation situation in Redcliff in order bring about improved service delivery in the provision of water and sanitation. It is proposed that the Municipality of Redcliff, City of Kwekwe, ZINWA, ZISCO/NewZim Steel, Resident Associations, the District Administrator’s Office, Development Agencies, Donors, the Private Sector and other partners should meet and discuss on the way forward.

 

  • Recommendations to the Municipality of Redcliff;
    • Immediately attend to all cases of water and sewage leakages reported in Redcliff;
    • The Municipality should mobilize resources to set up its own water purification plant, which will save it from inconveniences caused by other parties in the water supply chain. Furthermore, it is envisaged that the Municipality will also be able to supply cheap water to its residents;
    • Procure water directly from ZINWA instead of passing through many stakeholders that include: the City of Kwekwe, and NewZim Steel;
    • Immediately reduce the price of water to residents of Redcliff and charge water at the rate at which residents of the City of Kwekwe are charged;
    • Avoid discriminating residents when it comes to the provision of water. This recommendation stems from the finding that the Municipality gives other residents water but denies others;
    • Stop water disconnections without following the due process of the law;
    • Strengthen its audit function to ensure that cases of fraud are detected and corrective action is timeously taken;
    • Remove the special levy of US$10 and refund all those who have paid it. The levy has exacerbated people’s suffering;
    • Repair the existing boreholes and if possible provide more boreholes in the affected areas;
    • Stop without any further delays the disposal of raw sewage into the Nhamo/Rutendo River since the disposal thereof, puts the lives of human and animals in jeopardy;
    • Improve on security since unscrupulous individuals responsible for the missing, vandalized and stolen equipment at the Sewage Treatment Plants took advantage of security lax.
  • Recommendations to the Environmental Management Authority
    • Investigate and take corrective action against the disposal of raw sewage into the Nhamo/Rutendo River since the illegal disposal thereof, is putting the lives of animals and human beings in great danger;
    • Investigate the case of emissions from the Steel Makers Simbi Park branch and take corrective action since the health of residents is in peril
  • Recommendations to ZISCO Steel and the NewZim Steel Management
    • Dialogue with the Municipality of Redcliff in order to find a lasting solution to the water crisis facing the town. It is recommended that discussions with the Municipality of Redcliff should explore possibilities towards handing over the management of water to the municipality including the pipeline and the pump station among other equipments;
    • Rehabilitate the Cactus Water Purification Plant or Hand it over to the Municipality of Redcliff to enable it to rehabilitate it and supplement the existing water supply

 

  • Recommendations to the Ministry of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development
    • Intervene into the water crisis facing Redcliff;
    • Legislative reviews may be needed to ensure that water is made available cheaply to the people;
    • Provide resources or link the Municipality of Redcliff to other stakeholders to ensure that it can set up its own water purification plant;
    • Pronounce itself on the legality of water disconnections that are rampant in Redcliff; and
    • Ensure the implementation of recommendations of a fact finding mission that was set up in 2010
  • Recommendations to the City of Kwekwe
    • Take over the responsibility for distribution of water until the current crisis is resolved; or engage the Municipality of Redcliff to ensure that water is supplied to residents of Redcliff at the same rate at which the City of Kwekwe supplies its residents.
  • Recommendations to the Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA)
    • ZINWA should consider supplying water directly to the Municipality of Redcliff in order to avoid many stakeholders who are part of the existing water supply chain which has made water supply too costly. This should be considered after the Municipality of Redcliff has set up its own water purification plant;
    • Provide water for a small amount of money, since its sells raw water and does not incur any cost.

8     Recommendations to Steel Makers Zimbabwe in Redcliff

  • Immediately stop all forms of pollution endangering the lives of residents of Simbi Park and Rutendo suburbs
  • Recommendations to the Parliament of Zimbabwe
    • The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee responsible for Water and Parliamentary Portfolio Committee for Local Government should commission a fact finding mission to Redcliff and find out the root causes for unavailability and un-affordability of water;
    • The problem of water and in some cases the mismanagement of water by local governments is rampant, and water cuts among other actions are widespread, yet the availability of water, not just water but ‘safe water’ is a fundamental human rights issue. This calls for a radical reflection on the issue as well as how national laws and policies can be reformed to ensure that clean water is supplied at an affordable price as well as dealing with the issue pertaining to the legality of water disconnections
  • Recommendations to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation
    • Conduct a country mission to investigate the enjoyment of the rights to water and sanitation in Redcliff and other parts of Zimbabwe;
    • Advise the government or the Municipality of Redcliff on specific measures required for the realization of the rights to water and sanitation.
  • Recommendations to Residents of Redcliff (Low and High Density Suburbs)
    • Set up a Residents and Ratepayers Association to confront the Municipality of Redcliff vis-à-vis the water crisis among other service delivery challenges;
    • Monitor the quality of service delivery and inform the Municipality of Redcliff through Ward Councillors, residents association or directly to the management.
  • Recommendations to Development Partners
    • Partner with the Municipality of Redcliff in addressing the water and sanitation gaps identified in the report;
    • Development partners who previously supported some projects that remain incomplete should discuss with the Municipality of Redcliff on how such projects could be completed;
  • Recommendations to Zimbabweans in the Diaspora
    • Identify possible donors and link them to the Municipality of Redcliff or any other party that they feel comfortable working with;
  • Recommendations to the Private Sector
    • As part of the sector’s corporate social responsibility, it should contribute towards the alleviation of water challenges bedeviling Redcliff;
    • Donate boreholes to the residents of Redcliff.

Table of Contents

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Acknowledgements. 2

Executive Summary. 3

List of Acronyms. 10

List of Tables. 11

List of Figures. 12

Municipality of Redcliff Profile. 13

1       Background Information. 14

2       Research Methodology. 14

3       Findings and Discussions. 15

3.1        Water Governance: Long Water Supply Chain. 15

3.2        Broken Down Water and Sewage Treatment Plants and Equipment. 18

3.3        Irregular Supply of Water. 19

3.4        Rampant Water Disconnections. 20

3.5        Unaffordable Water in Redclidd: High Water Charges. 20

3.6        Forgotten Water Leakages. 21

3.7        Neglected Sewage Leakages. 22

3.8        Ignored Refuse Collection. 24

3.9        Unethical Disposal of Raw Sewage into the Nhamo/Rutendo River. 25

3.10     Possible Illegal Water Connections. 25

3.11     Contamination of water by Steel Makers close to Simbi Park, Redcliff. 25

3.12     Discrimination in the Provision of Basic Services. 25

3.13     Undemocratic Imposition of Charges. 26

3.14     Charges for Non-Existent Services. 26

3.15     Security Lax at Sewage Treatment Plants and Other Important Places. 26

3.16     Mismanagement of Municipality Affairs and Corruption. 27

4       Resource Mobilisation Gaps and Proposed Strategies for Improved Service in the Water and Sanitation Sector in Redcliff. 29

4.1        Resources Mobilisation Gaps. 29

4.2        Proposed Resource Mobilisation Strategies. 30

5       Conclusion and Recommendations. 31

5.1        Recommendations to all Stakeholders. 31

5.2        Recommendations to the Ministry of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development  31

5.3        Recommendations to the Municipality of Redcliff;. 31

5.4        Recommendations to the Environmental Management Authority. 32

5.5        Recommendations to ZISCO Steel and the NewZim Steel Management. 32

5.6        Recommendations to Steel Makers Zimbabwe in Redcliff. 32

5.7        Recommendations to the City of Kwekwe. 32

5.8        Recommendations to the Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA). 32

5.9        Recommendations to the Parliament of Zimbabwe. 33

5.10     Recommendations to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation. 33

5.11     Recommendations to Residents of Redcliff (Low and High Density Suburbs). 33

5.12     Recommendations to Development Partners. 33

5.13     Recommendations to Zimbabweans in the Diaspora. 33

5.14     Recommendations to the Private Sector. 33

Annexes. 34

®     Terms of Reference- Assessment of Service Delivery in the Water and Sanitation Sector in Redcliff  34

®     List of Institutions Consulted. 36

Endnotes. 37

 

List of Acronyms

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ACT-Southern Africa            Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa

EMA                                 Environmental Management Authority

KACSDM-VAG                    Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group

MDC-T                             Movement for Democratic Change- Tsvangirai

ZANU PF                           Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front

ZINWA                                       Zimbabwe National Water Authority

ZISCO                              Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company

 

List of Tables

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Table 1: Leadership of the Municipality of Redcliff. 13

Table 2: Testimony on Irregular Supply of Water from a Resident of Simbi Park. 19

Table 3: Question from Residents: Legality of Water Disconnections. 20

Table 4: Cost for Water and Related Services. 21

Table 5: Redcliff man threatens suicide over a sewer. 24

Table 6: Remarks against Discrimination from a Resident. 26

Table 7: Demands from the Residents. 26

 

List of Figures

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Figure 1: Water Supply Chain to Redcliff. 16

Figure 2: The Recommended Water Supply Chain to Redcliff. 17

Figure 3: Broken Down Borehole in Rutendo.. 19

Figure 4: Digging of Water Wells in Rutendo, Redcliff. 20

Figure 5: Costs of Increases as the Water Supply Chain Moves from ZINWA to Redcliff. 21

Figure 6: Sewage Leakages in Simbi Park, Redcliff. 22

Figure 7: Raw Faeces at Houses in Simbi Park, Redcliff. 23

Figure 8: Simbi Park Sewage Leakages. 23

 

Municipality of Redcliff Profile

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Redcliff is a municipal town situated in the Midlands Province in Zimbabwe.[i] The majority of the residents are either employees or former employees of the former Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (ZISCO), formerly RISCO founded in 1942 and now NewZim Steel, a subsidiary of Essar Holdings (Pvt) Limited. The town sits in an exceptionally iron-rich area and has relied on steel production as a source of revenue since it was founded in 1942.[ii]

The town is an extension of the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe and is governed by elected non-executive Councillors, and chaired by a Mayor. The Municipality is administratively run by a Town Clerk, who is its Chief Executive Officer. Table 1 below shows the leadership of the municipality at the time of reporting.

1 Full Name Municipality of Redcliff
2 Name of Mayor Hon. Kapuya
3 Name of Town Clerk Elizabeth Gwatipedza
4 Names of Councillors a)    Hon. Masiyiwa (Deputy Mayor)- Male

b)   Hon. Kapuya (Male)

c)    Hon. Masiyatsva (Male)

d)    Hon. Foroma (Male)

e)    Hon. Muchuweni (Male)

f)     Hon. Borewe (Male)

The following were allegedly dismissed by their political party (MDC-T) because of alleged corruption:

a)    Hon. Chikwiri (Male);

b)   Hon. Dhuro (Female);

c)    Hon. Majaji (Male)

5 Contact Details Municipality of Redcliff

Civic Centre

P. O. Box 100

Redcliff

Tel:+2635568787

Fax:+2635568787

 

1    Background Information

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The water and sanitation crisis crippling the town of Redcliff was raised at a meeting of the members of the Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG) on the 19th of July 2014.[2]

The KACSDM-VAG members hailing from Redcliff raised serious concerns on how residents’ human rights to water and sanitation continued to be violated and the situation believed to have been worsening. Compounding people’s fears was the seemingly lack of innovative ideas from the Municipality of Redcliff on how to contain the problems. The irregular supply of water, rampant water and sewage leakages, disposal of raw sewage into the river, water contamination and exorbitant price of water were cited among other challenges bedeviling the town of Redcliff and there were no signs of improvements.

The said meeting concurred that the denial of affordable water for consumption and other uses is tantamount to a serious violation of the human rights of the residents of Redcliff. The critical importance of water was reinforced by the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation (2013) who insists that water should not only be made available and accessible but should be safe for consumption and also that it should be affordable.[3]

The said concerned members of the KACSDM-VAG felt that the irregular supply of water is a human-made problem shouldered to institutions that are part of the water supply chain, which include but not limited to the Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA), the City of Kwekwe, ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel and the Municipality of Redcliff. Consequently, this prompted an investigation by the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa), through the said KACSDM-VAG and hence this report.

2    Research Methodology

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In order to gather data for the assessment, interviews were conducted with residents as well as consultations with relevant key institutions and other individual respondents. Furthermore, secondary sources of data were reviewed. The research team also visited different parts of Redcliff in order to witness the water and sewage leakages, the leaking valves, broken down boreholes, the disposal of raw sewage in the river, and vandalized sewage treatment plants, among others areas.

The first draft report was circulated to the Municipality of Redcliff, ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel, the City of Kwekwe and the ZINWA calling upon them to give comments. All the four key stakeholders gave inputs after receipt of the Draft Report.

  • The City of Kwekwe received the draft report on the 5th of August 2014 and feedback was received through a meeting between the research team and the Town Clerk on the 7th of August 2014;
  • The Managing Director’s Office of ZISCO received the draft report on the 6th of August 2014 and responded through an e-mail on the 7th of August 2014 stating that they had “… made some very good observations and recommendations… but can not comment or commit ourselves in the absence of NewZim Steel management. We shall however , pass on your report to NewZim Steel management once it is in place”;
  • ZINWA Kwekwe Office received the report on the 5th of August 2014, gave some comments and advised the research team on the 15th of August 2014 to forward the same draft report to the Gweru office for more comments; and
  • The Municipality of Redcliff received the draft report on the 5th of August 2014 and gave its comments through the Town Clerk on the 28th of August 2014.

The draft report was also peer reviewed and subjected to further scrutiny which added new insights and hence some minor differences between the first draft report and the final one.  In view of the afore-going, the research process was consultative and portrays a true picture of the water and sanitation situation in Redcliff.

3    Findings and Discussions

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Consultations made and literature review confirmed the existence of huge gaps in the provision of regular, safe and affordable water to residents of Redcliff and other stakeholders. The residents are facing the water and sanitation crisis for more than a decade and the challenges are worsening. The residents of Redcliff appeared to have been frustrated by the conduct of the Municipality of Redcliff in the provision of regular, safe and affordable water. The most disappointing comments came from a resident who regretted having bought a house in Simbi Park, Redcliff saying that life was extremely expensive and that the leadership did not seem to have been caring about the plight of the people. It has been highlighted that the continuation of the problem speaks volumes about the leadership’s lack of capacity to innovate and eliminate the challenges. The following specific findings were made:

3.1        Water Governance: Long Water Supply Chain

The Municipality of Redcliff buys water from ZISCO Steel / NewZim Steel[4] since it has no water treatment plant of its own. The ZISCO Steel / NewZim Steel buys water from the City of Kwekwe and sells it to the Municipality of Redcliff at a profit.

The City of Kwekwe buys raw water from the Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA) and purifies it before distributing it to its residents and other stakeholders such as ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel.  Figure 1 below portrays the movement of water from ZINWA until it gets to the residents of Redcliff.

Water Supply Chain

However, before 2010 water consumed in Redcliff was supplied by ZINWA and ZISCO Steel had given ZINWA authority over the pipelines from Dutchman Pools and pump station situated within the ZISCO premises. However, after 2010, ZISCO Steel regained control of the water infrastructure when other stakeholders thought that it was going to hand over the same to the Municipality of Redcliff.[5] In keeping thereof, ZISCO Steel and/or NewZim Steel remains as the water authority for Redcliff and the Municipality of Redcliff is rated as a third party, regardless of having direct access to the residents of Redcliff and other consumers of water.[6]

Another challenge to the residents of Redcliff is the fact that the City of Kwekwe supplies ZISCO Steel /NewZim Steel with industrial water which is perceived to be more expensive as compared to water for domestic use. However, it is believed that the water supplied to ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel by the City of Kwekwe is not meant for industrial use but is supplied to the residents of Redcliff and the said ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel pumps water for industrial purposes from the near-by dam.[7] Consequently, residents decried on why the City of Kwekwe continued to supply expensive industrial water, which is allegedly not required since ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel pumps water for industrial purposes from local dams.

Analysis of the water supply chain reveals a plethora of challenges. Innocent parties suffer because of problems caused by other parties. In 2012, ZINWA reportedly threatened to shut down the City of Kwekwe’s main water source owing to unpaid bills amounting to about US$1 million dollars.[iii] Shutting down the main water source would have caused a lot of suffering to other parties such as ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel, the Municipality of Redcliff and the residents of Redcliff.  Furthermore, the Chronicle (2012) reported that in December 2012, NewZim Steel owed City of Kwekwe, close to US$9 million in unpaid water bills.[iv] The non-payment of water bills has often been resulting in water disconnections that affected and will continue to affect innocent parties.

In light of the above, the following observations are made:

  1. Any decision by ZINWA to disconnect the City of Kwekwe, will cause tremendous harm to the City of Kwekwe residents, ZISCO/NewZim Steel and residents of the Municipality of Redcliff;
  2. The chain is too long and is umbilically linked in such a way that the link disadvantages innocent parties. The failure by the City of Kwekwe, to settle debts owed to ZINWA will result in disconnections which will affect the rest of the chain;
  3. As water moves from source to consumers, the price increases, which means that a consumer in Redcliff consumes water more expensively as compared to a consumer in Kwekwe. In Redcliff, consumers buy water at US$0.80 per cubic whilst in Kwekwe they buy it for as little as US$0.25 per cubic. The huge gap demonstrates the extent to which the residents of Redcliff suffer at the hands of ZISCO/NewZim Steel and the Municipality of Redcliff. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that the City of Kwekwe is selling industrial water to ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel.

In view of the above, the Municipality of Redcliff is encouraged to set up its own Water Purification Plant in Redcliff which will make it easy for the Municipality to regularly supply water to its residents at an affordable price.[8] Many options are also available such as allowing the City of Kwekwe to supply water directly to residents of Redcliff pending innovation towards a permanent solution to the water crisis.

Further to the above, the rehabilitation of the ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel Cactus mini Water Purification Plant will help to alleviate the water and sanitation crisis.[9] Furthermore, ZISCO Steel/New Zim Steel was urged by residents to hand over the water infrastructure to the Municipality of Redcliff and that the City of Kwekwe downgrades the water which it is supplying from ‘industrial’ to ‘domestic’ since that will help to reduce the price of water.[10]

The ideal chain overwhelmingly recommended by some institutions that are part of the water supply chain and residents is as shown in Figure 2 below. If implemented, the proposed water supply chain will save the Municipality from the afore-highlighted inconveniences and also that it will be able to supply affordable water to the residents.

The Recommended Water Supply Chain

3.2        Broken Down Water and Sewage Treatment Plants and Equipment

On the 21st of August 2014, the research team picked a long list of plants and equipment that had either broken down or were not being put good use. In some unimaginable cases, some structures had been vandalised and expensive equipment missing. Some of the plants and equipment include:

  • A water reservoir situated between Rutendo and Redcliff town, allegedly sponsored by USAID was incomplete and as a result there was no reliable water reservoir that serviced Rutendo, Millennium and Simbi Park among other areas. The research team learnt that money for the completion thereof was depleted and efforts were being made to mobilise additional resources;[11]
  • A new modernised sewage treatment plant that was under construction close to the police residential quarters had been vandalised and had dilapidated due to neglect and security lax. Most of the key equipment was missing and huge investments made were put to worst. The Municipality of Redcliff will require huge sums of money to complete the project;[12]
  • The Redcliff Sewage Treatment Plant was not functioning and all the pumps had broken down and had been in that state for a long period of time. As a result, the research team witnessed raw sewage being disposed directly to the Nhamo/Rutendo river which empts its water into the Kwekwe river;
  • Similar to the Redcliff treatment plant, the Rutendo plant was partially working and most the equipment was not working due to neglect or lack of maintenance. The plant was also empting sewage to the said Nhamo/Rutendo river;
  • Leaking valves were many. One of the valves was located at the bulky water meter close to a cement processing plant. The second leaking valve was located between a cement factory plant and Steel makers situated close to the bulky water meter;
  • The ZISCO water purification plant was not working due to missing pumps. ZISCO owns a mini water purification plant, fed by water from the Cactus dam. Respondents interviewed encouraged that if rehabilitated the plant will adequately supply water to Redcliff low density suburb;[13]
  • Water pump situated close to the Rutendo Secondary School’s sports ground was also vandalized due to security lax and at the time of reporting it was not functioning.;[14]
  • A broken down borehole was spotted close to ‘Zvigayo’ shops in Rutendo. It was drilled through the sponsorship of a local businessman. It is alleged that the broken down borehole has been incessantly sabotaged.[15] Interviews carried out also confirmed that there are similar boreholes in Torwood, where water is erratic. Donations were mobilized by a resident of Torwood who is in the Diaspora. Consultations made confirmed that the boreholes in Rutendo suburb were allegedly handed over to the Municipality of Redcliff, whilst the research failed to confirm the status of the Torwood boreholes. Vandalisation of the Rutendo boreholes is allegedly due to security lax. Figure 3 below shows a picture of one of the boreholes referred to;
 The borehole was donated by a local businessman as a gesture towards alleviating the water crisis.

3.3        Irregular Supply of Water

The research confirmed that the Municipality of Redcliff was failing and/or had neglected to regularly supply water to its residents. The residents of Millennium, Rutendo, Simbi Park and Torwood suburbs were the most affected and these residents complained of an endless quagmire of irregular supply of water. In some cases, residents had not received water for months which made life extremely difficult for them. The extract below captures the real situation on the ground in Redcliff and how the leadership was frustrating its residents, particularly women and children who are the most affected.

“I have never seen water coming out of my tap for the past 12 months. This municipality has no people at heart at all. They do not care at all that water is life and without water we will all die. When they give us water they do so during odd hours when people are sleeping and in most cases water does not last for more than one hour and the water will not have pressure at all. When I learnt that xxxxxxxxx {name withheld}, who is a woman, was promoted to the post of Town Clerk, I was happy since I knew that as a woman, she understands the importance of water to fellow women but the situation became worse and continues to worsen. In my case I need water for cooking, bathing my kids, and for the toilet. I had no choice but to forgo my garden, which has made my life difficult since I am now buying vegetables every day. This municipality and all those responsible for water shortages are evil”

Source: Interview with a resident of Simbi Park on 22 July 2014

Some residents of Redcliff had resorted to digging their own wells within their yards. This alternative source of water had significantly helped the people who otherwise would have seriously suffered. Figure 4, below shows one of the wells at a house in Rutendo.

The owner of the well said that everyday from around 4:00 am other residents knock at her gate fetching water. At least thirty (30) water thirsty residents fetch water at the well every day and this highlights the seriousness of the water crisis facing residents of Redcliff.

3.4        Rampant Water Disconnections

Adding salt to injury are some practices of the Municipality of Redcliff in which they disconnect water without notice and court orders. The residents queried the legality of water disconnections considering that the availability and accessibility to safe and affordable water is a human right. One of the interviewees appreciated the order given by the Minister of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development, Dr. Ignatius Chombo in 2012 when he ordered the City of Kwekwe to re-connect water it had disconnected against ZISCO/NewZim Steel for almost a month over a debt of over US$8 million.  The City of Kwekwe was accused of violating the rights of residents of the Municipality of Redcliff.[v]

The residents want to know on whether it is legal or illegal for local and water authorities such as the Municipality of Redcliff and ZINWA to disconnect water without following the due process of the law.

3.5        Unaffordable Water in Redclidd: High Water Charges

Another challenge pertaining to the water supply was the cost thereof since the Municipality of Redcliff was selling water to residents expensively as compared to residents of Kwekwe. The table below shows the rates charged by both the Municipality of Redcliff and the City of Kwekwe.

Ref

 

Description

 

Amount Charged in US$
Municipality of Redcliff City of Kwekwe
1 Charge per cubic to residents 0.80 0.25
2 Water re-connection after disconnection 15 5

The table above clearly shows how the Municipality of Redcliff was overcharging its residents regardless of knowing the extent to which they are suffering. It also shows how residents of Redcliff could be subsiding the residents of Kwekwe.[16]  It would be in the best interest of the residents for all stakeholders to table this issue for discussions in order to reduce the price of water charged in Redcliff.

The price of water increases as more parties join the Water Supply Chain

As depicted in the Figure above, the price of water increases as more parties are involved and the most hard-hit are the residents of Redcliff who buy it at 80 cents per cubic. Also making price expensive is that the City of Kwekwe sells industrial water to ZISCO/NewZim Steel and it is well known that industrial water is more expensive as compared to water for domestic use.

3.6        Forgotten Water Leakages

Regardless of the claim that water is scarce and that it should be saved, the investigations picked numerous points at which water leakages were not attended to for many years, resulting in huge loses. The following areas were reported:

  1. Chitoto Hostels: Water is lost daily due to tap leakages. This has been taking place for years and appears to have been neglected and/or forgotten;
  2. Corner Sally Mugabe way and Masasa Drive: The leakage has been taking place for years and the Municipality of Redcliff has not taken any action regardless of knowing the problem:
  3. Old Steel Road near Steel Makers Company: Water leakages were also observed and have not been attended to for many years;
  4. 14 Senanwe Road, Rutendo: Employees of the Municipality of Redcliff broke a tap and left water oozing out for almost 12 months.

It is important to acknowledge that not all leakages have been covered in this report but the few examples demonstrate the status quo in Redcliff. On the 28th of August 2014, the Municipality of Redcliff pledged that it was going to attend to all leakages.[18] However, residents were urged to report all leakages to the Municipality.[19]

3.7        Neglected Sewage Leakages

Sewage leakages are rampant in Rutendo and Simbi Park and these appear to have been forgotten. The following points have been observed:

  1. Magamba in Rutendo: In an area affectionately known by the people as ‘Magamba’ and resided by soldiers, former soldiers and war veterans among others, sewage leakages have been rampant for many years and these have been neglected and/or ignored by the Municipality of Redcliff. The leakages are still ongoing and it is not clear on how many people have fallen sick or died as a result of the filth environment created by sewage leakages. At a meeting held with the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th day of August 2014, it was learnt that the sewage mess is due to poor sewage infrastructure design, which the local authority promised to rectify at its earliest convenience;
  2. Bakorenhema Road in Rutendo: Along Bakorenhema Road, there has been a leakage for years and the problem has never been attended to.
  3. Rutendo Stadium: The leakage at Rutendo Stadium has not been attended to by the municipality and the area is a blot on the landscape and makes the stadium a public hazard;
  4. Main Sewage Pipe from Simbi Park: The main sewage pipe from Simbi has been incessantly leaking at a place between the bridge and police quarters. The leakage feeds into Nhamo/Rutendo river;
  5. Simbi Park: In Simbi Park sewage leakages are also rampant and the pictures below depict the situation on the ground, which is an eyesore to the public and a health hazard as well;
Raw sewage has been flowing endlessly and affecting many houses including House Number 4855, Simbi Park, Redcliff.
The lives of many children are in peril because of the Municipality of Redcliff’s poor service delivery

The pictures below were taken at House Numbers 4851, 4855 and 3990 Simbi Park, Redcliff at which raw sewage was flowing endlessly.

The sewage leakages in Simbi Park were reported to the Municipality in April 2014 but the problem has been ignored.

The situation is so dire that in some cases victims contemplate suicide as typified through an extract from the Guiding Star reported by Sithole (2014:8).

Redcliff main threatens suicide over a sewer

Talent Sithole

A Rutendo man Muzadzi has threatened to kill himself over persistent sewer problem that has been flowing at his house for the past 8 years. Muzadzi said people will one day find his body hanging at the District Administrator’s office if the problem is not arrested.

He says sewer has been flowing continuously past his house for the past eight years. Muzadzi said he reported this matter to the Redcliff Municipality on numerous occasions to no avail. He added that he also approached Zimrights in his bid to help the situation.

Muzadzi who is a war veteran said he has suffered enough adding that Redcliff Mayor and the Municipal Authority is guilt of human rights abuse. “The Redcliff Mayor should be charged for wanting to kill me and my family. For the past eight years incessant sewer has been flowing and has formed a pool right round the house. I now stay in an island.”

“It seems nobody at the Local Authority is willing to find a solution to the problem. Kapuya (mayor) said we have to die because we are not paying council rates” he said. Muzadzi said the government should look into the citing that he has been reduced to pigsty. “The government should redress this situation why should we be made to suffer and live like pigs” he said. Redcliff Municipality Mayor Freddy Kapuya said the council is working on the issue adding the problem is widespread.

“I helped to solve this problem not because I was threatened but that is my duty. It is also the main reason for me being in office to see that all residents get what they deserve”. “This issue of sewer is not affecting an individual but Redcliff as a whole therefore we are working with the engineering department to take action” he said. Experts say the sewer system needs to be upgraded arguing that the continued growth of population can not be contained by old system that is now dilapidated.

Source: Sithole, T (2014). Redcliff main threatens suicide over a sewer: The Guiding Star: 18 July 2014

The Redcliff Municipality agreed that the leakages will be attended to. However, in Rutendo, particularly in an area known as ‘Magamba’, the municipality will require approximately US$300,000 since the problem is linked to the sewage infrastructural design. The municipality will be required to re-design the sewage infrastructure since the population has increased and that the old infrastructure can not meet the needs of the current population. [20]

3.8        Ignored Refuse Collection

The Municipality of Redcliff had neglected collecting refuse from some high density suburbs. In areas visited such as Simbi Park and Rutendo, residents had resorted to burning garbage whilst others loaded it in their vehicles during the night and threw it away in near-by bushes. If the non-collection of refuse by the municipality as well as the disposal in near-by bushes continues, the environment will be polluted. It was recommended that the Municipality of Redcliff commences refuse collection services without any further delays. One of the key respondents recommended that residents should use the refuse or litter to make composites and as well as making biogas. However, this would require experts to give technical support to the residents. Furthermore, the municipality’s refuse trucks broke down and were using a truck meant for road construction as well as a tractor[21].

3.9        Unethical Disposal of Raw Sewage into the Nhamo/Rutendo River

A visit to the Redcliff and Rutendo Sewage Treatment Plants on the 20th of August 2014 made shocking revelations of the disposal of raw sewage to the river. The Redcliff plant had entirely broken down and all the pumps were not working. This has been the situation for almost a year and raw sewage was being disposed to the Nhamo/Rutendo River which feeds into Kwekwe River. Water flowing along Nhamo/Rutendo River was contaminated which threatens human and animal life along the said river and Kwekwe river among other rivers which receives the contaminated water. Whilst the Municipality of Redcliff could be facing financial constraints, it is unacceptable for them to put the lives of people and animals into jeopardy.

3.10     Possible Illegal Water Connections

A meeting with the residents hinted at possible cases of water theft through illegal water connections after and before the bulky water meter.[22] The investigating team was informed of some companies and plots located before the bulky water meter, situated close to Steel Makers and a Cement manufacturing company in Rutendo who were using water and what could not be established was whether or not they were paying for the water they were consuming. Whilst illegal water connections could not be established, it would be prudent for the municipality to remain vigilant and guard against such practices.  In fact, the Midlands Observer[23] carried a story alleging illegal water connections before the bulky water meter, which may warrant further investigations.

3.11     Contamination of water by Steel Makers close to Simbi Park, Redcliff

Simbi Park residents residing alongside or close to Steel Makers complained of water contamination from emissions emanating from the Steel Makers plant. On the 14th of June 2014, ten (10) residents of Simbi Park signed a petition that was submitted to the Managing Director of Steel Makers but at the time of reporting no feedback had been received. The petition was copied to the Municipality of Redcliff, Redcliff Police Station, Environment Management Authority (EMA) and the local Councillor. A resident interviewed indicated that the plant was manufacturing steel which opposed its original purpose of being a distribution point. The company manufactures steel and the equipment used cause noise pollution, air pollution and water pollution thereby raising concerns on why and how it was given a licence to operate close to residential areas. [24]

3.12     Discrimination in the Provision of Basic Services

The residents of Simbi Park and Rutendo complained that the Municipality of Redcliff was discriminating against them based on their economic and social status. It was alleged that suburbs inhabited by the rich enjoyed regular water supply and excellent sanitation levels as compared to high density suburbs where the poor people stay.  The provision of basic services was differentiated between the rich and the poor.

Suburbs inhabited by the poor suffer from:

  • Rampant and ignored sewage leakages;
  • Neglected water leakages;
  • Neglected garbage;
  • Poor roads, not being repaired and in some suburbs the roads were never graveled;
  • Absence of street lights

The residents felt that the Municipality was punishing them for being poor.  The table below captures a statement made by one of the residents who was showing frustration at being discriminated against by the Municipality of Redcliff.

Vanogara kumadhewu-dhewu havana dambudziko remvura nekuti vane mari. Vanoiwana nguva nenguva. Varombo tine nhamo tinogara tichitambudzwa. Takafanana nevanhu vanogara kumusha. Isu vakadzi tisu tanyanyisa kutambura nokuti tinotsvaka mvura yacho kuti tibike chikafu uye kugeza hembe (People who stay in low density suburbs are not facing water problems because they have money. They get water all the time. The poor are always punished for being poor. We are staying in conditions similar or worse as compared to people staying in villages. Women are the ones who are suffering more since they have the burden of fetching water for cooking, and washing)

3.13     Undemocratic Imposition of Charges

In June 2014, residents were shocked when they received water bills reflecting an additional US$10 charge, said to be a ‘special levy’. However, the residents alleged that they were not consulted and hence the protests and refusal to pay the same. The residents suspected that the municipality did not adhere to legal requirements, including that of consulting the residents and notifying them in three newspapers in line with the Urban Councils Act. The table below shows demands from the residents on the same issue.

The residents demanded that the Municipality of Redcliff should prove that it adhered to the legal requirements or else the special tariff should be reversed and that all residents who paid should be refunded.

3.14     Charges for Non-Existent Services

Further to alleged undemocratic imposition of tariffs, the residents of Simbi Park in Redcliff complained against charges made for non-existent services. For instance, the Municipality of Redcliff was charging for public lighting yet there were no street lights in Simbi Park.[25]  Residents felt cheated and wanted to know on whether it is ethical for local authorities to receive money for services not being rendered. There were no street lights in Simbi Park, yet the municipality was pocketing money for public lighting every month.

In light of the above, the Municipality of Redcliff should be honest and reap revenue that it deserves. A decision should be made on whether or not to continue charging since the residents of Simbi Park and other suburbs without public lighting feel cheated.

3.15     Security Lax at Sewage Treatment Plants and Other Important Places

The new sewage treatment plant close to the police residential quarters in Redcliff was vandalised and expensive equipment stolen due to security lax, yet the municipality has a municipal police section responsible for security matters. The huge loss suffered could have been prevented if the plant had been adequately guarded. Repairs to the plant and completing the construction of the plant in order to make it functional requires at least US$2 million.[26] Furthermore, the research team observed that one of the water pumps located close to Rutendo had been vandalised and some of its key components may have been stolen due to security gaps. In this case study, security caused huge losses and a waste of funds.  Furthermore, the research team visited the ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel plant at Cactus Dam wall on the 21st of August 2014 and discovered that there was no one at the plant and the buildings and equipped appeared to have been neglected and were in a state of dilapidation. To this end, the Municipality of Redcliff and ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel are urged to improve security at water reservoirs, pipelines and treatment plants. There is a risk that the lives of water consumers will endangered in the event of water contamination. The research team failed to establish on whether or not water reservoirs were guarded since any security lax will endanger people’s lives.

3.16     Mismanagement of Municipality Affairs and Corruption

It is of pivotal importance to note that the ability to overcome the water crisis or any other challenge is dependent on the effective and efficient management of the municipality’s affairs, which itself is dependent on the capacity of the councilors as well as the staff of the municipality in carrying out their duties in the most effective and efficient manner. It then follows that mismanagement and lack of capacity will undoubtedly result in poor service delivery which tremendously affects the well-being of the people. Consultations made and the review of relevant literature, made the following findings:

3.16.1                Integrity of the Council

The research made an effort to understand the underlying reasons why three (3) councilors: Hon. Chikwiri, Hon. Dhuro, and Hon. Majaji were suspended by their political party. It was alleged that the three Councillors were bribed to vote for the Mayor of the Municipality of Redcliff. The full Council comprised two (2) ZANU PF and seven (MDC-T) candidates. The MDC-T Councillors constituted the majority and by virtue of their numbers they would have voted for an MDC-T Councillor to be a Mayor. When a ZANU PF Councillor won the Mayoral seat, suspicion was raised which prompted an investigation, whose findings recommended expulsion from the party due to corruption.  However, Hon. Dhuro took the matter to court and at the time of reporting court processes had not been concluded. This incident of alleged corruption tarnishes the image and standing of the Council in the eyes of the public.

3.16.2                Flouting Procedures When Passing Resolutions

The case in which the Municipality of Redcliff is alleged to have imposed the special levy of US$10, speaks volumes on the failure of the council to adhere to set procedures in passing its resolutions. Interviews with some residents who attended meetings being used as a justification for consultation flatly denied having approved the special levy and have challenged the municipality to provide evidence of their approval.

Furthermore, consultations with residents revealed that all was not well at the Municipality of Redcliff since some councilors distanced themselves from the decision to impose the said monthly US$10 special levy.[27] However, it was pointed out by one of the residents that all the councilors approved the special levy but were deceiving the residents into believing that they were not part of the decision-making process. This case raised concerns since some councilors were not transparent enough and refused to be held accountable.

3.16.3                Lack of Accountability, Transparency and Integrity

The residents alleged that the municipality neglected and/or refused to fully implement the 2010 recommendations of an investigations made by a team of investigators set up by the Ministry of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development (MLGURD). In 2010, the Minister of MLGURD set up a team[28] to probe, alleged gross mismanagement of municipality affairs and corruption.[vi]The team picked numerous acts of mismanagement and drew a list of recommendations that were not fully implemented. As an example, residents claim that some of the individuals implicated in the staff loan scam had not yet fully reimbursed the money advanced to them. Instead, some of the implicated officials were promoted to higher ranks. Residents demanded the implementation of the recommendations as well as being given the proof of the implementation thereof;[29]

3.16.4                Weak Audit Function

The internal audit function is weak when it fails to detect irregularities. Residents complained that the Municipality was neglecting to detect cases of fraud perpetrated by the staff of the municipality. It was reported that there were times when employees of the Municipality of Redcliff, converted money paid by residents for water consumption to their own use and these cases were not detected on time. This has been particularly the case at the Torwood Municipality sub-office where one of the employees converted close to US$251 to his or her own use. The case was under police investigations at the time of reporting. [30] Another case took place in 2012 in which a municipality employee was arrested and sentenced to community service at Mafidi Mnangagwa Primary school.  However, a former employee of the municipality made it clear that there are many officials who are stealing money but no action was being taken and he challenged to municipality management to strengthen its audit function in order to detect such cases before they cripple the local authority.

3.16.5                Unprocedural Changes of Ownership of Properties

A resident of Simbi Park complained that his stand was changed into another person’s name without his consent and in the absence of any consultations. In a letter to the Town Clerk dated 14 May 2014 and copied to the Mayor, Ward Councillor, Mr. Mutondo, Kwekwe Legal Advice Centre, Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa, ZimRights and the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission, the resident raised serious concerns on how he had been deprived of ownership of a stand on which he had built a modern house.[31] It is through these irregularities that the name of the municipality continues to be soiled.

4    Resource Mobilisation Gaps and Proposed Strategies for Improved Service in the Water and Sanitation Sector in Redcliff

____________________________________________________________________________

The gaps highlighted above, hindering effective and efficient service delivery in the water and sanitation sector speak volumes about the need for the Municipality of Redcliff to embark on a rigorous resource mobilization drive.

4.1       Resources Mobilisation Gaps

The following areas will undoubtedly require resources:

  1. Setting up the Water Purification Plant:

Redcliff relies on water which it buys from ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel. This is the case since it does not have a water treatment plant of its own. ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel also buys water from the City of Kwekwe. In the long term, the Municipality of Redcliff should consider mobilizing resources from the central government, and development partners among others to set up its own plant which will draw water from Kwekwe River.

  1. Completing Unfinished Projects:

Donor funded projects such as water reservoirs were not completed due to financial constraints. A classic example is a water reservoir that was funded by USAID. It is important for the Municipality of Redcliff to contact the respective donors and check on their willingness to support the completion of the projects that they started. It would a waste of resources if such projects remain incomplete.

  • Rehabilitating the Rutendo Sewage Reticulation System:

In Rutendo and in an area known as ‘Magamba’, the existing sewage reticulation system was poorly designed and this has resulted in numerous sewage leakages that are difficult to eliminate. The Municipality of Redcliff requires US$300,000 to re-design the sewage system and get rid of the leakages.

  1. Repairing and Maintenance of Water Pumps:

Sewage pumps at Redcliff Sewage Treatment Plant were not working due to lack of service or maintenance. This posed a danger to human and animal life since raw sewage was being emptied in a near by Rutendo/Nhamo River. Consequently, resources will be required to repair the existing pumps or buy new ones.

  1. Human Resource Gaps:

Many positions were not filled and people were acting in different capacities. At the time of reporting the position of Engineer has just been filled after the Town Planner had acted in that capacity for many years. Resultantly, qualified people should be hired and this requires financial resources. Whilst waiting for resources to recruit the services of permanent employees, the Municipality of Redcliff is recommended to exploit the volunteer modality through engaging UNV Experts, VSO professionals, US Peace Corps experts, and JICA Volunteers to name but a few since these experts are qualified and can help the municipality to carry out its mandate in the most effective and efficient manner.

4.2       Proposed Resource Mobilisation Strategies

The following strategies are proposed for implementation by the Municipality of Redcliff:

  1. Infrastructure Handover from ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel:

The ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel should consider handing over the water infrastructure including the water pipes from Dutchman Pools to Redcliff, water reservoirs and pump station. This is not new since ZINWA was previously given full responsibility as a water authority but this has for a long time been denied to the Municipality of Redcliff. This calls for discussions between ZISCO Steel/NewZim Steel and the Municipality of Redcliff.

  1. Motivating Residents and Ratepayers:

The Municipality of Redcliff should establish and nurture good rapport with the residents and rate payers. The residents appeared to have been frustrated and angry with the municipality for not attending to the water and sewage leakages, imposing levies, and failing to regularly supply water among other complaints. As an important source of revenue the Municipality has no choice but to treat the residents well.

  • Approaching the Central Government:

The central government should be approached to give the much needed resources for improved service delivery in the water and sanitation sector.

  1. Approaching Previous Donors:

Donors who previously supported the municipality should be visited to check on whether they will be able to support the completion of some projects that were left incomplete.

  1. Exploiting the Volunteer Modality:

The world is awash with volunteers as an important resource towards achieving development effectiveness. Possible partners who can supply fully-paid experts include: United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme, US Peace Corps, VSO, and Skillshare, among others. In the short and mid term, the Municipality of Redcliff, should be encouraged to exploit this volunteer route since most of the volunteers are experienced engineers, town planners, managers, accountants, teachers, and different technicians to name but a few.

  1. Approaching the Private Sector:

The private sector is urged to support development activities in their areas of operation as part of their corporate social responsibilities. However, the municipality should develop a policy to motivate the private sector to contribute towards development initiatives in Redcliff.

  1. Smart Partnership with other Local Authorities in Other Countries:

The municipality should explore partnering with other local authorities in other countries. It is through smart partnerships that local authorities can learn from each other and improve on service delivery.

  • Diaspora Contributions:

Zimbabweans in the Diaspora have an important role to play in linking the Municipality of Redcliff to donors in different parts of the world. The drilling of boreholes in Torwood is a good example to showcase how Zimbabweans in the Diaspora can contribute. If Zimbabweans are adequately engaged, they will link the municipality to donors.

5    Conclusion and Recommendations

____________________________________________________________________________

What is crystal clear, in this case study is that the Municipality of Redcliff is failing and/or neglecting to execute its mandate vis-à-vis the provision of safe, regular and affordable water to its residents. This is a cause for serious concern since the accessibility to safe and affordable water is a human right and any denial thereof is tantamount to human rights violation.  The following recommendations are made:

5.1        Recommendations to all Stakeholders

  • Relevant stakeholders should organize a meeting to openly dialogue on the water and sanitation situation in Redcliff in order bring about improvements. It is proposed that the Municipality of Redcliff, City of Kwekwe, ZINWA, ZISCO/NewZim Steel, Resident Associations, the District Administrator’s Office, Development Agencies, Donors, the Private Sector and other partners should meet and discuss on the way forward.

5.2        Recommendations to the Ministry of Local Government, Urban and Rural Development

  • Intervene into the water crisis facing Redcliff;
  • Legislative reviews may be needed to ensure that water is made available cheaply to the people;
  • Provide resources or link the Municipality of Redcliff to other stakeholders to ensure that it can set up its own water purification plant;
  • Pronounce itself on the legality of water disconnections that are rampant in Redcliff; and
  • Ensure the implementation of recommendations of a fact finding mission that was set up in 2010

5.3        Recommendations to the Municipality of Redcliff;

  • Immediately attend to all cases of water and sewage leakages reported in Redcliff;
  • The Municipality should mobilize resources to set up its own water purification plant, which will save it from inconveniences caused by other parties in the water supply chain. Furthermore, it is envisaged that the Municipality will also be able to supply cheap water to its residents;
  • Procure water directly from ZINWA instead of passing through many stakeholders that include: the City of Kwekwe, and NewZim Steel;
  • Immediately reduce the price of water to residents of Redcliff and charge water at the rate at which residents of the City of Kwekwe are charged;
  • Avoid discriminating residents when it comes to the provision of water. This recommendation stems from the finding that the Municipality gives other residents water but denies others;
  • Stop water disconnections without following the due process of the law;
  • Strengthen its audit function to ensure that cases of fraud are detected and corrective action is timeously taken;
  • Remove the special levy of US$10 and refund all those who have paid it. The levy has exacerbated people’s suffering;
  • Repair the existing boreholes and if possible provide more boreholes in the affected areas;
  • Stop without any further delays the disposal of raw sewage into the Nhamo/Rutendo River since the disposal thereof, puts the lives of human and animals in jeopardy;
  • Improve on security since unscrupulous individuals responsible for the missing, vandalized and stolen equipment at the Sewage Treatment Plants took advantage of security lax;
  • Explore the implementation of resource mobilization strategies highlighted under Section 4 of this report.

5.4        Recommendations to the Environmental Management Authority

  • Investigate and take corrective action against the disposal of raw sewage into the Nhamo / Rutendo river since the illegal disposal thereof, is putting the lives of animals and human beings in great danger;
  • Investigate the case of emissions from the Steel Makers Simbi Park branch and take corrective action since the health of residents is in peril

5.5        Recommendations to ZISCO Steel and the NewZim Steel Management

  • Dialogue with the Municipality of Redcliff in order to find a lasting solution to the water crisis facing the town. It is recommended that discussions with the Municipality of Redcliff should explore possibilities towards handing over the management of water to the municipality including the pipeline and the pump station among other equipments;
  • Rehabilitate the Cactus Water Purification Plant or hand it over to the Municipality of Redcliff to enable it to rehabilitate it and supplement the existing water supply;

5.6        Recommendations to Steel Makers Zimbabwe in Redcliff

  • Immediately stop all forms of pollution endangering the lives of residents of Simbi Park and Rutendo suburbs

5.7        Recommendations to the City of Kwekwe

  • Take over the responsibility for distribution of water until the current crisis is resolved; or engage the Municipality of Redcliff to ensure that water is supplied to residents of Redcliff at the same rate at which the City of Kwekwe supplies its residents.

5.8        Recommendations to the Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA)

  • ZINWA should consider supplying water directly to the Municipality of Redcliff in order to avoid many stakeholders who are part of the existing water supply chain which has made water supply too costly;
  • Provide water at a small amount of money, since its sells raw water and does not incur significant

5.9        Recommendations to the Parliament of Zimbabwe

The recommendations are specifically made to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee responsible for Water and Parliamentary Portfolio Committee for Local Government

  • Commission a fact finding mission to Redcliff and find out the root causes for unavailability and un-affordability of water;
  • The problem of water and in some cases the mismanagement of water by local governments is rampant, and water cuts among other actions are widespread, yet the availability of water, not just water but ‘safe water’ is a fundamental human rights issue. This calls for a radical reflection on the issue as well as how national laws and policies can be reformed to ensure that clean water is supplied at an affordable price as well as dealing with the issue pertaining to the legality of water disconnections;

5.10     Recommendations to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation

  • Conduct a country mission to investigate the enjoyment of the rights to water and sanitation in Redcliff and other parts of Zimbabwe; and
  • Advise the government or the Municipality of Redcliff on specific measures required for the realization of the rights to water and sanitation.

5.11     Recommendations to Residents of Redcliff (Low and High Density Suburbs)

  • Set up a Residents and Ratepayers Association to confront the Municipality of Redcliff vis-à-vis the water crisis among other service delivery challenges;
  • Monitor the quality of service delivery and inform the Municipality of Redcliff through Ward Councillors, residents association or directly to the management.

5.12     Recommendations to Development Partners

  • Partner with the Municipality of Redcliff in addressing the water and sanitation gaps identified in the report;
  • Development partners who previously supported some projects that remain incomplete should discuss with the Municipality of Redcliff on how such projects could be completed;

5.13     Recommendations to Zimbabweans in the Diaspora

  • Identify possible donors and link them to the Municipality of Redcliff or any other party that they feel comfortable working with;

5.14     Recommendations to the Private Sector

  • As part of the sector’s corporate social responsibility, it should contribute towards the alleviation of water challenges bedeviling Redcliff;
  • Donate boreholes to the residents of Redcliff.

 

Annexes

____________________________________________________________________________

®     Terms of Reference- Assessment of Service Delivery in the Water and Sanitation Sector in Redcliff

  1. Introduction

On the 19th of July 2014, the Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG) made a resolution to investigate the underlying reasons why there was a crisis of water and sanitation in Redcliff.[32] Reports from the members of the KACSDM-VAG residing in Redcliff and residents of Redcliff alleged flagrant violation of the human right to water and sanitation and that the violation was continuing unabated. Among the alleged challenges include: irregular supply of water, rampant water and sewage leakages, high price of water as compared to Kwekwe, and unresponsive leadership to name but a few. Consequently, the assessment is aimed at uncovering the water and sanitation gaps thereof and propose recommendations to different stakeholders who are part of the water supply chain and other relevant stakeholders.

 

  1. Project Scope

The assessment will cover Redcliff and investigate the water and sanitation situation.

 

  1. Assessment Objectives

The objectives of the assessment are as follows:

  1. To investigate the water governance structure and how the structure could be contributing to the water and sanitation crisis;
  2. To probe and document the actual situation on the ground vis-à-vis the following:
    1. The water supply situation;
    2. Incidents of water and sewage leakages and how responsive is the municipality in addressing the leakage thereof;
    3. Capacity of the Municipality of Redcliff in addressing the water and sanitation crisis;
    4. Accountability, transparency, integrity and legitimacy (ATIL) of the Municipality of Redcliff since ATIL has a bearing how effective and efficient is the municipality in addressing the water and sanitation situation;
    5. Resource mobilization efforts in addressing the water crisis;
    6. And any other areas that the research team shall deem fit as long as such areas are connected to the water and sanitation crisis
  • To propose specific recommendations to different stakeholders;
  1. To propose a resource mobilization strategy for improved service delivery in the water sector in Redcliff

 

  1. Assessment Outputs

The key output will be a report that has specific recommendations to different stakeholders. Further to the report the research team will be required to use the Redcliff case study and propose a tool that will be used to measure service delivery in the water sector. The report will be for public consumption whilst the measuring tool will be for internal use.

  1. Timelines

It is expected that the research team completes the assignment on or before the 1st of September 2014.

 

®List of Institutions Consulted

  1. The Municipality of Redcliff;
  2. The City of Kwekwe
  3. Zimbabwe National Water Supply Authority (ZINWA);
  4. Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (ZISCO Steel)

 

Endnotes

____________________________________________________________________________

[1] The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) is a regional, non-governmental and non-political organisation that was set up in 2004 to campaign against corruption, and poor service delivery in Southern Africa. ACT-Southern Africa is registered in Zimbabwe as a non-governmental organisation. (Registration No. MA 147/2004 refers). The work of ACT-Southern Africa entails: national and regional advocacy for anti-corruption and governance policy and law reform; social prevention and community empowerment; institutional capacity building; and anti-corruption /governance research.

[2] The Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG) is a group of individuals who are concerned about corruption and poor service delivery in the Kwekwe, Redcliff, Silobela and Zhombe. The members came together and agreed to implement activities aimed at preventing and combating corruption and poor service delivery within their communities. The group acts as a watchdog against corruption and poor service delivery and works closely with relevant authorities in preventing and combating corruption and improving service delivery in a number of sectors that include health, and education among others. Apart from whistle blowing functions, public education and reporting corruption the KACSDM-VAG also monitors and reports on service delivery

[3] The UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation (2013). Frequently Asked Questions. [online]. Available at http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Water/FAQWater_en.pdf. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

[4] NewZim Steel is a subsidiary of Essar Holdings (Pvt) Limited

[5] Meeting with the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th of August 2014

[6] ibid

[7] ibid

[8] This recommendation was supported by a number of stakeholders that include: the City of Kwekwe, ZINWA, residents and the Municipality of Redcliff itself, though its implementation was perceived in the long term considering the abundance of resources needed for its implementation.

[9] Recommended by residents on the 8th of August 2014 in Rutendo.

[10] ibid

[11] The meeting with the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th of August 2014

[12] Ibid

[13] Interview conducted on the 20th of August 2014 in Redcliff.

[14] Meeting with residents on the 29th of August 2014.

[15] Meeting with residents on the 3rd of August 2014 in Rutendo

[16] Meeting with the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th of August 2014

[17] Meeting with residents on the 22nd of July 2014

[18] Meeting with the Town Clerk on the 28th of August 2014

[19] ibid

[20] Meeting with the Town Clerk of the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th of August 2014

[21] Ibid

[22] Meeting some residents on the 20th of August 2014

[23] Page 1 of The Midlands Observer of the week 4-8 August 2014

[24] Petition from residents to Steel Makers dated 14 June 2014

[25] All invoices or statements received by Simbi Park residents reflect public lighting yet there are no such services in their suburb.

[26] Meeting with the Municipality of Redcliff on the 28th of August 2014 at the Municipality of Redcliff offices

[27] Meeting with residents on 22 July 2014. Some councillors distanced themselves from the decision to impose the special levy since they were also not consulted.

[28] The terms of reference of the team included among others: establishing the reasons for the suspension of the Mr. Trust Semwayo (Acting Town Clerk) in 2009, investigating possible abuse of public funds by councillors, officials and failure to comply with policies and regulations in the disbursement and use of public funds; and investigating the accounting, financial and personnel systems of council and to ascertain the underlying reasons for a decline in service delivery and collective decisions being taken by management and the councillors

[29] Interview with residents of Rutendo on 25 July2014

[30] Interview with residents on 22 July 2014

[31] Letter written by Mr. Mandava dated 14 May 2014 and received by the Municipality of Redcliff on the same date.

[32] The Kwekwe/Redcliff Anti-Corruption and Service Delivery Monitoring Voluntary Action Group (KACSDM-VAG) is a group of individuals who are concerned about corruption and poor service delivery in the Kwekwe, Redcliff, Silobela and Zhombe. The members came together and agreed to implement activities aimed at preventing and combating corruption and poor service delivery within their communities. The group acts as a watchdog against corruption and poor service delivery and works closely with relevant authorities in preventing and combating corruption and improving service delivery in a number of sectors that include health, and education among others. Apart from whistle blowing functions, public education and reporting corruption the KACSDM-VAG also monitors and reports on service delivery

[i] Parliament of Zimbabwe (2011).  Redcliff Municipality Profile. [online]. Available from: http://www.parlzim.gov.zw/attachments/article/135/Redcliff.pdf. [Accessed on 22 July 2014] – Page 3

[ii] Wikimedia Foundation, Inc (2013). Redcliff, Zimbabwe. [online]. Available from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redcliff,_Zimbabwe. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

[iii] Sunday News (2012). ZINWA threatens to disconnect Kwekwe. [online]. Available from: http://www.sundaynews.co.zw/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=27667:zinwa-threatens-to-disconnect-Kwekwe&catid=38:local-news&Itemid=131. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

[iv] The Chronicle (2012). NewZim Steel owes Kwekwe Council $9 million. [online]. Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=44383:newzim-steel-owes-Kwekwe-council-9-million&catid=38:local-news&Itemid=131. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

[v] NewsDay (2012). Chombo comes to Redcliff rescue. [online]. Available from:  http://www.newsday.co.zw/2012/04/26/2012-04-26-chombo-comes-to-Redcliff-rescue/. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

[vi] Maodza, T and Chideme, M (2010) (HERALD) Team set up to probe Redcliff. [online]. Available from: http://maravi.blogspot.com/2010/01/herald-team-set-up-to-probe-Redcliff.html. [Accessed on 22 July 2014]

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Issue 1- e-Corruption Alerts- February 2014- Corruption in Zimbabwean Parastatals

Welcome to our e-Corruption Alerts!

 The e-Corruption Alerts is part of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa)’s Corruption Media Monitoring Project (CMMP), which monitors and analyses media reports on corruption and related issues. The weekly e-Corruption Alerts  gives an analysis of cases of corruption reported in the media. Furthermore, it gives full details of the articles as well as their authors.

This edition zooms on media articles on scandals rocking the Zimbabwean parastatals with a special attention to the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) and the Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS). The Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of ZBC and PSMAS were allegedly paid obscene salaries that far exceeds what other CEOs in the region are paid.

Making matters worse is the fact that these two institutions are facing viability problems which speaks volumes about the poor and deplorable performance of the respective CEOs and members of their Boards of Directors.

 According to Nyashanu (2014) “Muchechetere was awarding himself a package in excess of $40 000 which included a US$27 000 monthly salary, allowances of up to $6 000, unlimited fuel allocation, payment of his mortgage, construction of a leasure area including a precast wall at his residence, and payment of as much as $2500 for his domestic workers’ wages”[1] The former PSMAS CEO, Mr. Cuthert Dube earned a monthly salary of US$230,000.[2]  The salaries are outrageous considering the salary levels in the United States among other countries.[3] President Barack Obama earns US$400,000  per annum.[4]

 Comparatively, other CEOs of parastatals in the region earn much less. In Namibia and in line with a Cabinet decision made in 2010, parastatals were framed in three  categories: Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 and each category was given a minimum and maximum salary for CEOs.

 a)      Tier 1 CEO earns between N$401,199 (US$36,472.64[5])  and N$803 413 (US$73,037.55) annually;

b)     Tier 2 CEO earns between N$451 739 (US$41,067.18) and N$987 197 (US$89,745.18) annually; and

c)      Tier 3  CEO earns betweenf N$709 722 (US$64,520) and N$1 532 828 (US$139,348) per annum.[6]

Apart from the salaries the ZBC CEO and other officials “…unprocedurally set up a housing scheme with mortgage guarantees from CBZ Building Society supported by US$1,3 million deposited by ZBC in an investment account.”[7]

Furthermore, the ZBC CEO is implicated in a US$1 million scandal in which he allegedly inflated the purchase price of a radio Outside Broadcasting (OB) van from a Chinese firm. ZBC contracted the China National Instruments Imports and Exports Corporation (Instrimpex) to provide the OB Van worth between US$100 000 and US$200 000 on the real market. However, the purchase price was inflated to US$1,050, 000.[8]

Whilst many people condemned the scandals, the Vice President of the Republic of Zimbabwe (Joyce Mujuru) appears in the media to be condoning corruption, and she lashed out at the media for exposing corruption in parastatals.[9] The position taken by Mujuru demonstrates the lack of political will in confronting the scourge of corruption. However, the ruling ZANU PF distanced itself from Mujuru’s utterances.[10] Following the utterances made, many stakeholders called for the resignation of Mujuru and these include: ZAPU[11], media and the general populace,[12] and MDC to name but a few.[13]

 

In response to the scandals, Cuthbert Dube and the PSMAS Board chairperson Mrs. Meisie Makeletso Namasasu were fired.[14] Furthermore, the PSMAS Board reduced the salaries of staff and the CEO will earn between US$50,000 and US$60,000 which still remains too high.[15] Mr. George Charamba, one of the PSMAS Board members who allegedly “raked in over $100 000” in 2013 as board fees offered to resign out of shame.[16]  The ZBC boss Happison Muchechetere was suspended whilst the Board of Directors was dissolved.[17]

 

Concerned individuals and institutions raised their voices against the scandals. The Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ) has called for a probe into the Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) as well as other medical aid societies in the country.[18] There is a chorus of calls for a nationwide probe on Zimbabwean parastatals as well as for Happison Muchechetere and Cuthbert Dube to return all the money that they looted and also face the law. Equally guilt are the Boards of the PSMAS and ZBC that must face the law.

 

Enjoy reading a collection of articles made.

 

Featured Articles

 

1.     Outrage over Muchechetere’s ‘filthy’ package

John Nyashanu- Available at https://www.newsday.co.zw/2013/12/11/outrage-muchecheteres-filthy-package/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

MEDIA representative groups and former executives of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) yesterday expressed outrage at suspended CEO Happison Muchechetere’s “obscene” salary and perks.

They said it was unbelievable that the head of a company could find it justifiable that he takes such huge remuneration and allowances while the rest of the employees wallowed in poverty –  going for as long as five months without salaries.

They told NewsDay in separate interviews, that Media, Information and Broadcasting Services minister Jonathan Moyo did right to institute investigations at the corporation and sending Muchechetere on forced leave last month, pending a forensic audit.

Moyo’s deputy Supa Mandiwanzira on Monday revealed that Muchechetere was awarding himself a package in excess of $40 000 which included a $27 000 monthly salary, allowances of up to $6 000, unlimited fuel allocation, payment of his mortgage, construction of a leasure area including a precast wall at his residence, and payment of as much as $2 500 for his domestic workers’ wages.

Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) Zimbabwe chapter chairperson Njabulo Ncube described Muchechetere’s employment benefits as “scandalous”.

“This gives credence to minister Jonathan Moyo’s firing of the ZBC  board, suspension of the CEO and the ongoing audit.  No manager should allow themselves to take away such frightening benefits while the generality of the workforce is suffering to that extent.

“The board should have been privy to the salary and allowances of its executives and is therefore liable for the excesses and penury at ZBC because good governance demands accountability.  This is a scandal,” said Ncube.

Zimbabwe Union of Journalists secretary-general Foster Dongozi weighed in saying: “If it’s true that those obscene salaries were being paid, it is unfortunate and justifies government’s intervention.

It is a moral disgrace if the reports are true that some people could swim in such filthy and decadent wealth while workers went without.  We applaud the ministry (of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services) for the intervention, something we have been calling for, for close to two years,” he said. Former ZBC CEO Munyaradzi Hwengwere said he hoped corrective measures would be put in place to turn around the fortunes of the corporation.

“Though I don’t have detailed information on what is happening, except what I read in the media, I hope the challenges they are facing will be solved.  It is my sincere hope that everything will be sorted out for the benefit of workers, listeners and viewers,” said Hwengwere, who was at the helm of ZBC at the turn of the millennium.

 

2.     Probe medical aid societies — CCZ

Business Reporter- Available at https://www.newsday.co.zw/2014/02/12/probe-medical-aid-societies-ccz/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

THE Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ) has called for a probe into Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) and other medical aid societies in the country amid indications that there is rampant abuse of public funds.

In a statement, CCZ executive director Rosemary Siyachitema said the consumer watchdog was in shock and disturbed with the news of the salaries for top management at PSMAS.

She said considering the general economic situation that the country was facing and the continuous problems the ordinary consumer who is a member of PSMAS has had in accessing good service, the salaries were shocking and a slap in the face of PSMAS members.

“As the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe on behalf of the many consumers who are PSMAS members, we want to see a thorough investigation on this issue, including other medical aid societies so that consumers are vindicated in what they have been saying for many years that they are receiving shoddy services from some medical aid societies,” Siyachitema said.

The calls for the probe follow revelations by the media that former PSMAS chief executive officer Cuthert Dube earned $230 000 monthly.

Siyachitema said if the salary amounts were found to be true, it meant that the members had been contributing every month to fill the pockets of top management rather than be given good service when they needed it.

“Considering what the public has heard about salaries in PSMAS, ZBC (Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation) and local authorities, it seems that this is just the tip of the iceberg. On behalf of all struggling consumers, investigations cannot just be made on a piecemeal basis, there is need for a group made of principled people to investigate all these issues,” she said.

She, however, said it was unacceptable for consumers to suffer at the hands of collapsing banks due to greedy service providers and let this be business as usual.

“As CCZ, we are horrified and shocked that consumers’ rights have been trampled on in this way and the little money that the ordinary person is earning is going towards such corrupt officers.  We feel that the consumer is being robbed and this is a criminal act — and rather than retiring people and giving them golden handshakes and giving them extra allowances, these people need to be investigated.”

3.     US$2m housing scandal at ZBC

Editor- Available at http://www.herald.co.zw/us2m-housing-scandal-at-zbc/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

SUSPENDED ZBC chief executive officer Happison Muchechetere and three senior managers are embroiled in a multi-million-dollar double-dipping housing scandal which sources described as a looting spree over the past four years. The four unprocedurally set up a housing scheme with mortgage guarantees from CBZ Building Society supported by US$1,3million deposited by ZBC in an investment account.

And though the scheme was approved by then board chairman, Dr Cuthbert Dube on May 5 2010, it was done without the knowledge or approval of the board.

The funds deposited by the ZBC management exceeded the threshold allowed for execution by the corporation’s staff without the approval of the board.

The agreement for the controversial housing scheme was illegally signed by general manager (finance) Mr Elliot Kasu who has no power to authorise such contracts.

In terms of the ZBC Purchasing Policy, the CEO is empowered to authorise financial transactions of up to US$50 000 without Board approval, while from US$50 000 to US$300 000, the purchase would have to go through the State Procurement Board.

Under the scheme, Muchechetere was awarded US$250 000, while Kasu, Allan Chiweshe (general manager radio programming) and Tazzen Mandizvidza (general manager news and current affairs) all got US$200 000 apiece, the scheme totalling US$850 000, to buy houses in the northern suburbs.

The four contracts, under “Housing” provided for the service of the mortgages at CBZ by ZBC at 100 percent for Muchechetere, who did not have an account with the bank and thus used the ZBC account to pay off his mortgage, and 50 percent apiece for Kasu, Chiweshe and Mandizvidza who had accounts with the bank from which deductions towards servicing the mortgage were made.

Despite purchasing plush properties with ZBC funds, the four continued drawing monthly executive housing allowances that stood at US$3 500 for  Muchechechetere and US$2 500 for Kasu, Chiweshe and Mandizvidza, giving a cumulative US$1 808 666 over the past four years.

The allowances were only stopped after the intervention of the Ministry of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services in November that culminated in the dissolution of the entire ZBC board, suspension of Muchechetere and Kasu, and the payment of workers’ outstanding salaries.

The four are also under fire for their hypocrisy in that throughout the seven-month period when their subordinates went without salaries, at times getting as little as US$40 for bus fare, Muchechetere and his three general managers made a pretense of freezing their salaries while nicodemously raking in thousands of dollars every month in allowances.

Records show Mr Muchechetere got his US$9 300 every month broken down as US$3 500 housing allowance, US$2 400 for security, US$3 000 entertainment allowance, and US$400 for domestic workers while the three general managers were also paid their US$5 300 in allowances broken down as US$2 500 for housing, US$2 400 for security and US$400 for maids without fail.

Bishop Trevor Manhanga, who sat on the board, confirmed that the housing scheme was never brought to the board’s attention as the chairman, Dr Cuthbert Dube, had made it clear that the issue of conditions of service for the CEO was his business.

“That was never brought to the board, and the board turned down a budget for 2013 which included luxury vehicles for the management. The decision regarding conditions of service for the guys was the chairman’s business,’’ he said.

Another board member, who preferred anonymity said the 2013 budget included a new Mercedes Benz S350 and Land Cruiser for the CEO even though his current fleet was basically new.

Efforts to get comment from Mr Muchechetere were unsuccessful as his phones went unanswered.

4.     Muchechetere in fresh cash scandal

Bridget Mananavire  – Available at http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_muchechetere-in-fresh-cash-scandal/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

Suspended Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) chief executive officer, Happison Muchechetere, who stands accused of plundering the bankrupt broadcaster through obscene salaries and allowances, reportedly paid himself $90 000 in yearly bonuses.

Between 2009 and 2012, according to a salary schedule seen by the Daily News on Sunday, ZBC ran a payroll of over $900 000 a month, with the rest of the workers taking home $600 000 while Muchechetere and his colleagues took the remainder after salary increments.

Documents seen by this paper show that the increments were done without the approval of the board while Muchechetere illegally approved salaries for his managers.

The documents also show that Muchechetere’s huge salary and allowances were approved by fired board chairman Cuthbert Dube.

The salary schedule indicates that Muchechetere was personally taking home $22 500 per quarter in bonuses, although ZBC never made any money to sustain the bonus payments for the CEO.

This was 12,5 percent of his annual basic salary. Muchechetere’s quarterly bonuses came at a time ZBC was wallowing in a $40 million debt and was failing to pay workers.

What has alarmed government is that like in the case of ZBC, top managers at State-controlled public enterprises, in connivance with their different boards awarded themselves huge allowances inflated to make up for their lower salaries.

This meant the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) lost revenue in terms of Pay As You Earn (Paye) and indications are that the revenue authority is now investigating the tax evasion scandal.

Information minister, Jonathan Moyo was forced to dismiss the entire ZBC board and send Muchechetere on forced leave after he failed to draft a turnaround strategy for the corporation.

Muchechetere was reportedly taking home a package of up to $40 000 from a company whose monthly revenues top $275 000 per month, against a budget of $2,3 million of which about $1 million should go to salaries.

In a bid to bring sanity to the State broadcaster’s salary wage bill, government slashed the salaries of employees saying the wage bill was not sustainable.

Salaries for all employees were reverted back to those approved by the ZBC board in 2010, with Moyo arguing the current salaries had been single-handedly approved by embattled former board chairperson Dube without the knowledge of the full board.

Acres of newspaper space have been filled with details of how Muchechetere, and three others in the public broadcaster’s top echelons, received housing loans of about $200 000 each along with various other generous hefty allowances.

Our sister paper, the Daily News, earlier revealed that the suspended ZBC boss was embroiled in a messy $1 million scandal in which he allegedly inflated the purchase price of a radio Outside Broadcasting (OB) van from a Chinese firm.

The State broadcaster entered into an agreement with China National Instruments Imports and Exports Corporation (Instrimpex) for the purchase of the OB Van worth $100 000 and $200 000 on the real market.

The figure was, however, allegedly inflated to $1 050 000 by Muchechetere in alleged connivance with Instrimpex officials.

As the scandals rock State-controlled enterprises, the following has emerged; several State enterprises have no boards in place, some boards are not meeting at all and other boards lack the necessary skills.

Boards are often deliberately raising salaries of CEOs because the level of their allowances is linked to the CEOs salaries

There is no systematic board members’ selection and training, as a result of which most board members are not sufficiently equipped to effectively carry out their duties.
There have been calls for a commission of inquiry to look into the scandals at the loss making State enterprises.

Most of the scandals are said to occur in the procurement departments where invoices are inflated to astronomical levels.

“There is clear connivance between heads of parastatals, boards and the private to steal money through inflating invoices.

“A case in point is the ZBC issue where an OB van for $100 000 was invoiced for $1 million. This is rampant in most parastatals,” said the source

 

5.     ZBC boss in $1m scandal

Mugove Tafirenyika – Available at http://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2014/01/28/zbc-boss-in-1m-scandal [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

HARARE – Suspended Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) chief executive officer Happison Muchechetere is embroiled in a messy $1 million scandal in which he allegedly inflated the purchase price of a radio Outside Broadcasting (OB) van from a Chinese firm.

Documents in possession of the Daily News show that sometime last year, the State broadcaster entered into an agreement with China National Instruments Imports and Exports Corporation (Instrimpex) for the purchase of the OB Van worth $100 000 and $200 000 on the real market.

The figure was, however, allegedly inflated to $1 050 000 by Muchechetere in alleged connivance with Instrimpex officials.

It is not clear if the cash-strapped ZBC forked out the whole cash for the van but information at hand shows the ZBC, through a deal with a local bank, paid $100 000 and the van was delivered.

Officials at ZBC now fear that either the balance was paid to the Chinese company and the difference of $900 000 was shared between Muchechetere and Instrimpex officials or the broadcaster now owes Instrimpex the huge amount for a van that costs far less. 

The Daily News can reveal the ministry of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services has since written to the new ZBC management to ask the Chinese company to prepare a proper invoice to verify how a van worth between $100 000 and $200 000 could be charged over $1 million.

All this was done without the knowledge of the board and without going to tender.

Muchechetere is believed to have nicodemously sneaked out to China where the deal to inflate figures was sealed and a fake $1 050 000 invoice was generated on June 28, 2013 and presented to the State broadcaster as the cost of the van.

This is notwithstanding the fact that as CEO, Muchechetere was only authorised to approve purchases not exceeding $50 000, while the ZBC board approved purchases of up to $300 000, with any purchase above that requiring the approval of the State Procurement Board.

Muchechetere had indicated in a June 1, 2013 executive meeting that $450 000 was enough to purchase the OB van, a new cargo van and a new crew bus but he single-handedly travelled to China secure a deal to buy the OB van only for more than $1 million.

Minutes of the meeting, attended by Muchechetere, Tazzen Mandizvidza, the general manager News and Current Affairs; Allan Gweshe, the general manager Programming and Elliot Kasu, general manager Finance and Administration; show that the amount from BancABC was supposed to be enough for the purchase and shipment of the equipment into the country.

“The GCEO (group CEO) proposed to the meeting that since a Television Outside Broadcasting Van had already been acquired from China, the BancABC-ZBC contract meant to purchase a Television OB van should now be reviewed and instead be used to secure a new Radio OB Van, a new Cargo Van and a new Crew Bus,” the minutes read.

“He said the funding is adequate to meet the purchase of the three items.”

According to documents, ZBC had entered into an agreement with BancABC in December 2011 wherein the bank agreed to refurbish ZBC’s OB van to the tune of $495 595 in exchange for advertising airtime.

The State broadcaster, however, later decided the money from the BancABC agreement be channelled towards the purchase of the OB radio, crew bus and cargo van since they had already acquired an OB van for television.

Muchechetere went on to request that BancABC release the amount in a July 2, 2013 correspondence to the bank, which the financial institution duly did on October 28, 2013.

“According to the auxiliary agreement signed in China on 21 June 2013, a deposit of $100 000 is required to allow its shipping to Zimbabwe,” Muchechetere said.

“We kindly request that you release the $100 000 required for the deposit and the subsequent instalments of deposit in terms of the agreement.”

Efforts to obtain comment from Muchechetere were fruitless yesterday as his mobile was unreachable.

The ZBC CEO, who is currently on forced leave over obscene salaries paid to the broadcasters’ management and general mismanagement, was pampering himself with a hefty package amounting to over $40 000 a month, including a monthly salary of $27 000, as workers wallowed in poverty.

In December last year, government revealed the ZBC boss enjoyed outrageous perks which included home entertainment of $3 000, housing allowance of $3 000, $2 500 for his security, unlimited fuel allowance and wages for his maid, among other benefits.

 

6.     Salaries cut at ZBC as drama over looting scandal continues

Tererai Karimakwenda – Available at http://www.swradioafrica.com/2014/01/30/salaries-cut-at-zbc-as-drama-over-looting-scandal-continues/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

The staff at Zimbabwe’s public broadcaster ZBC, many of whom have not been paid for several months, were dealt another blow Wednesday when the information and broadcasting Minister announced their salaries will be cut back to the levels they earned in 2010, with immediate effect.

Information Minister Jonathan Moyo, who took over the portfolio in Mugabe’s new cabinet after the disputed elections last July, addressed journalists in Harare where he revealed more details of how senior managers criminally abused funds and other assets at ZBC over the last four years.

Moyo said salaries had been negotiated and approved by the former board chairman, Cuthbert Dube, “without the knowledge of the ZBC board” and they were therefore “illegal”.

The controversial Minister sacked Dube and the entire board last week, accusing them of abusing funds. The former chief executive, Happison Muchechetere, was reportedly earning $40,000 a month at the time he was fired, while ordinary staff have gone without wages for the last 7 months.

It was also revealed Wednesday that ZBC’s top four executives received home loans of about $200,000, paid by the public broadcaster, and also received various other housing allowances. These were also approved by Cuthbert Dube.

Moyo told reporters that about 85 permanent employees at ZBC were also only receiving wages as part-time workers. In addition 99 students were earning salaries while claiming to be interns. The Minister explained that as a result, the state broadcaster was insolvent and could not sustain the current wage bill.

He further warned that those found guilty “shall with immediate effect be dealt with in terms of the law in order to hold them to account and recover from them any proven loss of ZBC funds of assets”.

But Moyo’s sincerity and motivation are being questioned by observers and activists in Zimbabwe, who say they want to see how far the ZANU PF minister will go to prosecute officials from his own party.

Journalist Francis Rwodzi, who has been speaking to ordinary Zimbabweans and human rights activists in Harare, Gweru and Kwekwe, told SW Radio Africa that many believe Moyo’s actions are part of a broader ZANU PF plan to divert attention from the real bread and butter issues.

“Civil society players say we need to be careful about this so-called blitz on corruption and trusting Moyo. ZANU PF is failing to deliver on their election manifesto and don’t want the people to focus on that,” Rwodzi explained.

Meanwhile Muchechetere has also been linked to $1 million scandal in which he is accused of inflating the purchase price of a radio outside broadcasting (OB) van from a Chinese company.

According to the Daily News newspaper, the State broadcaster entered into an agreement with the China National Instruments Imports and Exports Corporation sometime last year, for the purchase of an OB Van worth between $100,000 and $200,000 on the real market.

But Muchechetere is alleged to have connived with officials at the Chinese company and inflated the price to $1,050,000.

Some Zimbabweans, commenting on developments at the ZBC online, said they want to see real action taken to hold those responsible to account.

One reader said: “Hapana nyaya apa (There is nothing to talk about here), we all know this government has a lot to account for in the past 20 years. If they are serious they should set up a commission of inquiry to look into all government expenditure for the past 20 years. Panofiwa”.

Another questioned Moyo’s sincerity and motivation, saying: “Ane vanhu vake vaanoda kuisa mumaposition iwaya. zvingwarirei izvozvo”, meaning “He has his own people that he wants in those positions. Be aware of him”.

And yet another had a suggestion: “Cut the salaries for the executives, not the rest of the employees wanzwa. Please bear in mind these people are already earning peanuts.”

Journalist Rwodzi agreed, saying: “People are really concerned about the amounts of money that chefs are taking home at government institutions while the other workers are failing to get anything for months. They are concerned about the state of the country when these chefs are not being held accountable.”

Minister Moyo told journalists that the process of selecting an independent auditor to look into ZBC will start next month and a new board would be appointed soon, after the forensic and audit are completed.

7.     Mugabe spokesman offers to resign over salary scandal

Available at http://nehandaradio.com/2014/02/10/mugabe-spokesman-offers-to-resign-over-salary-scandal/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

President Robert Mugabe’s spokesman George Charamba, embarrassed by the “SalaryGate Scandal” has offered to resign and says cabinet ministers who allowed state owned companies to award obscene salaries to their top executives, should do the honourable thing and also resign. 

Charamba raked in over $100 000 last year from the scandal-ridden Premier Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) despite claiming he was the least paid person on the board.

Charamba who doubles up as presidential spokesman and Permanent Secretary in the Information Ministry was a key board member, including serving on the finance and budget committee that approved PSMAS CEO Cuthbert Dube’s obscene US$500 000 in monthly salaries, benefits and allowances.

It was also under his watch as Permanent Secretary in the Information Ministry that the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) paid the now suspended CEO Happison Muchechetere a whooping $40 000 a month even though workers at the debt-ridden broadcaster went for months without being paid.

ZBC is currently saddled with a $44,3 million debt amid revelations at least 500 workers will have to be retrenched in a restructuring exercise meant to turnaround the public broadcaster.

In an interview with the state aligned Star FM on Thursday evening, Charamba conceded that he and his colleagues had slept on the wheel and should do the honourable thing and resign.

“That’s dereliction of duty on the part of ministries. We slept on the job. That’s the bottom line. Whether we snoozed because we were sleepy or snoozed because we were ignorant, it makes no difference,” Charamba said.

“Zimbabweans are angry and have every reason to be angry. Take, for example, ZBC (Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation). That money which was supposed to have them entertained was being taken to sponsor large lives,” he said.

“Those involved, including myself; should be made to pay. I should relinquish my position. If I am not moved by my conscience, I should be moved by a higher authority,” Charamba told a local radio last week.

According to Information Minister, Professor Jonathan Moyo, Mugabe used Tuesday’s cabinet meeting to express his disgust at the scandal and ordered Cabinet ministers to take full responsibility of parastatals and State enterprises that fall under their portfolios and ensure that the culprits are brought to book.

Moyo said the president was “dismayed by the undeniable rot which is allegedly rampant among the 78 parastatals and State enterprises and the 92 local authorities in the country, and whose extent includes corruption of the tender and procurement processes as well as price distortions to the detriment of ordinary consumers.”

Moyo said some parastatals and local authorities are yet to comply with a cabinet directive (issued November 2013) to submit salary schedules to the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC).

“Since then, the OPC has received schedules of salaries and allowances along with feedback from some but not all of the affected organisations. Among other things, the preliminary outcome of these submissions is as follows: Several organisations in question actually do not have boards in place,” Moyo said.

“Some of the boards in place are not meeting as required by the law. Most of the boards do not have the skills necessary to discharge their mandate and this has created opportunities for one or a few individuals to control the boards.

“Boards tend to deliberately raise salaries of their management knowing that the level of board allowances is tied to the salaries of management. Many board members are not sufficiently equipped for their duties because they do not have systematic criteria for board selection or training.

Most boards do not have remuneration committees to help determine the salaries and allowances of their organisations. Virtually all boards in question are not evaluated in terms of their performance. In most cases there is no ministerial supervision of boards,” Moyo said.

8.     Supa Mandiwanzira Accused of Bias in ZBC Scandal Probe

By John Chimunhu- Available at http://zimnowmedia.wordpress.com/2013/11/21/supa-mandiwanzira-accused-of-bias-in-zbc-scandal-probe/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

Anti-corruption activists have demanded the immediate removal of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services deputy minister Supa Mandiwanzira from the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation corruption investigation amid allegations he is biased.

The calls came after it emerged that Mandiwanzira, who took charge of the investigation this week, had a deep personal rivalry with Brigadier-General Elliot Kasu, the suspended ZBC finance director at the centre of the alleged scandal.

Now Daily has been told by government officials that Mandiwanzira’s production, broadcast and public relations companies, ABC Communications and Mighty Movies could be asked to testify over their dealings with the bankrupt state broadcaster.

Additionally, according to a statement released Thursday by anti-corruption lobby group Consumer Action, Mandiwanzira could not be expected to be impartial in the probe as he had the interests of his private ZiFM and ZiTV Online to protect. Zi FM competes directly with the ZBC and has reportedly lured advertisers and staff from the public broadcaster.

“Mandiwanzira’s appointment was a violation of the constitution because he is a licence holder in the same business that he is supposed to regulate and control,” Consumer Action said.

Mandiwanzira clashed with Kasu in June when the two squared off during the Zanu PF primary elections in Nyanga South, which the former won. Their rivalry has deepened through the Zanu PF Manicaland executive, where both are members belonging to rival factions, sources said.

“After leaving ZBC, Mandiwanzira continued to produce programmes that were shown on ZBC-TV. The nature of his contract must be investigated, along with those of scores of independent producers who were paid astronomical fees by ZBC. It is well known that many such producers abused the corporation’s resources without paying and now own the rights to the productions,” Consumer Action said.

Panic has gripped the ZBC after the investigation got underway last week. Information minister Jonathan Moyo suspended the entire Cuthbert Dube-led board and sent CEO Happison Muchechetere and Kasu on forced paid leave. The ministry claimed it had contracted the Comptroller and Auditor-General to investigate the alleged financial rot at the corporation’s Pockets Hill headquarters. A ministry official said the probe would establish the ZBC’s true financial position and examine all financial transactions to determine the source of its multi-million dollar losses.

The investigation is also expected to uncover over-staffing and payment irregularities after it was revealed that 46 managers’ salaries were gobbling up $1 million of the corporation’s $1.6 million monthly salary budget. Mandiwanzira revealed on Wednesday that ZBC’s monthly revenue was $275 000 compared to its $2.3 million budget.

Ordinary workers have not been paid since May while managers enjoy inflated salaries, allowances, housing and car loans, according to union representatives.

Moyo is accused of using the purported clean-up of ZBC to settle scores in the race in Zanu PF to succeed the ailing party leader Robert Mugabe.

Muchechetere took over the reins at ZBC in 2008 after Zanu PF ordered the sacking of former CEO Henry Muradzikwa, who was paid to go after being accused of failing to use the airwaves to campaign for Mugabe, resulting in election defeat. Muchechetere adopted a hard line. He reportedly refused to take orders from then minister Webster Shamu, whom he considered his junior in their wartime ranks. Muchechetere rejected cabinet-ordered reforms and barred all Mugabe opponents from the state media, playing a key role in the public media’s role in Zanu PF rigging of the July 31 election.

Under Muchechetere, a war veteran, a festering sex scandal worsened. Programme presenters and DJs reported to the Zimbabwe Union of Journalists that they were often forced to have sex with bosses before going on air. The egregious Muchechetere accused the victims of being ‘prostitutes’ and stopped an investigation launched by human resources director Benaniah Shumba. Many of the women were forced to abandon complaints levelled against editor Tazzen Mandizvidza and former news manager O’brian Rwafa.

Consumer Action called for a parliamentary investigation into the ZBC scandal.

“Jonathan Moyo is responsible for some of the problems at ZBC and there is no way he can be impartial. He forced ZBC to host expensive Zanu PF galas and rallies that were broadcast live. He also came up with the unpopular ’75 percent local content’ policy, which forced viewers and advertisers to switch to digital channels, costing ZBC revenue. Moyo also pushed up characters like Munyaradzi Hwengwere, who left amid damaging scandals involving theft of equipment,” Consumer Action said, urging people not to pay licence fees until the scandal was resolved.

Zanu PF is reported to be positioning its deputy information director, Psychology Maziwisa to take over from Muchechetere.

9.     PSMAS fires Cuthbert Dube

Paidamoyo Chipunza Health Reporter- Available at http://www.herald.co.zw/psmas-fires-cuthbert-dube/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

Premier Service Medical Aid Society group chief executive Dr Cuthbert Dube and the society’s board chairperson Mrs Meisie Makeletso Namasasu have been booted out. The society has been in the news in recent days amid revelations the top management was gobbling at least US$1 million in basic monthly salaries at a time PSMAS was reeling from a US$38 million debt.

As at December 31, the society owed service providers US$38 million in unpaid bills for medical services rendered to its members.

In a statement released yesterday evening, PSMAS board secretary Mr Cosmos Mukwesha said the vice chairperson Mr Newton Mhlanga was appointed acting chairperson.

“At its sitting of the 27th day of January 2014, the Premier Service Medical Aid Society board of directors resolved to relieve the current board chairperson, Mrs M M Namasasu, of her duties as chairperson, forthwith. In line with the society’s constitution, the board appointed the vice chairperson, Mr N Mhlanga as acting chairperson until the appointment of a substantive chairperson.

“Further, the board resolved that in view of the fact that the group chief executive, Dr C.E Dube has reached retirement age, he be retired. Details on the retirement are being worked out,” reads part of the statement.

Sources close to the happenings at PSMAS House claim that the board was forced to take action after its members held an intense meeting with the Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa yesterday.

It is believed that it was only after this meeting that the PSMAS board met and reversed its earlier decision to slash salaries of PSMAS executives.

In its last meeting held at PSMAS House last week, the board had resolved to slash Dr Dube’s salary from US$230 000 per month to about US$60 000- a figure that was still way above any other CEO of a Government parastatal.

Dr Dube has been at the helm of PSMAS since 1992 while Mrs Namasasu, a director for Implementation and Control of Expenditure Unit with the ministry of Finance had been on the board for the past 18 years.

Previously, Dr Dube was the general manager of the then Public Service Medical Aid Society. This latest development follows revelations of extravagant basic salaries of PSMAS 14 top executives amounting to about US$1 million a month- almost half of the organisation’s monthly wage bill.

As at December 2012, Dr Dube, who sits on 20 boards, was earning a monthly salary of US$230 000 a month while the group’s finance manager, Mr Enock Gwinyai (no longer with the PSMAS) earned a basic salary of US$200 000.

The group’s operations executive Mr Enock Chitekedza was earning US$122 000 while eight other senior directors were earning a basic salary of US$60 000 every month.

Three others, including Dr Dube’s personal assistant and a secretary were earning US$30 000, US$22 000 and US$15 000 00 each.

This brought the monthly wage bill of the top 14 to nearly US$1,1 million while about 300 others earned a combined US$900 000.

Meanwhile, people interviewed said the new board chairperson should ensure that the new CEO does not earn anything more than US$20 000 basic salary.

Mr Shadreck Maziwisa of Harare said considering the fact that this money is not a profit in whatsoever context,PSMAS CEO should thus be paid between U$10 000 and US$15 000.

“They have not worked for this money, if anything they are stealing from patients. This is money entrusted to them by members as medical savings,” said Mr Maziwisa.

“The idea of medical aid is such that members pool resources to meet medical bills of the few patients who get sick on a monthly basis and medical aid societies are the administrators of such funds. Of course administrators have a salary but it should not be anything out of this world and they should also be fulfilling their obligations,” he said.

As at December 31, PSMAS owed service providers nearly US$38 million but argued that it was also owed US$44 million in unremitted contributions.

10.  PSMAS board slashes Cuthbert Dube’s salary

Harare Bureau- Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/psmas-board-slashes-cuthbert-dubes-salary/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

THE Premier Service Medical Aid Society board has slashed the salaries of chief executive officer Cuthbert Dube and senior management at the firm. Since September 2012, Dube had been taking home $230,000 monthly as his basic pay, while remuneration for 13 other executives ranged from $15,000 for the CEO’s personal assistant, to $200,000.

Board members would last night not say how much Dube would take home effective January 2014, but sources indicated it would be within the range of that of the highest-paid CEO in Zimbabwe’s private sector, a figure believed to be between $50,000 and $60,000.

This would mean he now gets roughly a quarter of what he earned between September and December 2013, but is still the highest paid job in a government-linked enterprise.

Another source said this salary would also be slashed when government completes its re-alignment of packages of bosses at parastatals and State-owned enterprises.

In a statement soon after last night’s board meeting, deputy chair Newton Mhlanga said they had taken the decision in December 2013.

The board met yesterday to review operations at PSMAS and respond to articles by the media this week on the firm’s debts and its salary structure.

“The board caused an immediate review of the remuneration of top management in line with market trends. The board commissioned an independent salary survey to guide its deliberations and communicated its position to government through the Ministry of Finance.

“The process was concluded on December 24, 2013 and the resolution on the new reduced salaries and benefits took effect on January 1, 2014,” the statement read.

Mhlanga declined to take questions and would not say what the new salary structure of PSMAS’ top 14 is. Previously, the top 14 gobbled nearly $1,1 million of the total wage bill of $2 million.

He said they took note of a weakness in the society’s remuneration practice, founded on a long-established culture from PSMAS’ inception in the colonial days, where the CEO’s package was solely determined by the board chair.

“The board, through its benefits committee is finalising the review and realignment of board fees and related benefits in line with market trends.

“The board made a decision to review its operating procedures and align these to best practice in corporate governance,” read the statement.

Mhlanga said the board also decided that specialists like medical doctors working for PSMAS should be competitively rewarded ahead of general administrative staff.

“The board has already commissioned a restructuring exercise of the entire organisation which process should complete (sic) by end of January 31.”

PSMAS has a membership of 794,000 people, mostly civil servants and the uniformed services. As at December 31, 2013, the society owed service providers $38 million in unpaid bills.

Dube earned $144, 097,52 in June 2012, and it rose to $230, 000 by September 2013. This means his basic salary went up nearly $100, 000 in three months.

The PSMAS annual wage bill rose from $15,547,171 in 2011 to $33,413,373 in 2012, almost half of which was paid to the top 14 managers.

After Dube, the next two top earners were the group finance manager, an E Gwinyai (no longer with PSMAS), who earned a basic salary of $200,000 a month, and group operations executive Enock  Chitekedza ($122,000).

Eight other senior directors were earning a basic salary of $60,000 every month. Two middle managers were paid $30,000 and $22,000 each, while Dube’s PA, Florence Tsiga, took home $15,000 monthly.

While the top 14 earned nearly $1,1 million monthly, while everyone else at PSMAS earned a combined $900,000. Further, all group executives recently received a $300,000 payment, approved by Dube, for as yet unclear reasons.

Minutes of a meeting on July 4, 2012 show that  Dube approved lump sum payments of $300, 000 for each group executive. Documents in our possession also show that PSMAS bought a house in Glen Lorne, Harare, for about $534,000 for Dube.

It is not clear if the purchase was a loan advanced to Dube or was part of his package as group CEO. Meanwhile, government has ordered PSMAS to furnish it with details of its salary structure amid calls by legislators for the suspension of the management.

Health and Child Care Minister David Parirenyatwa said they were urgently dealing with the “shocking” salaries being paid to managers at PSMAS.

Parirenyatwa was responding to Senators questions in the Upper House yesterday. Manicaland Senator Patrick Chitaka (MDC-T) had asked if reports that Dube was earning $230,000 were true and such salaries were sustainable.

“We have already invited them to give us information to discuss this issue. We are not only looking at salaries but we are looking at what you are contributing as an individual and what they are paying to hospitals and service providers. So we are deeply investigating to make sure that as a population, we are not compromised,” said Parirenyatwa.

“We will look at the law and statutes and see whether they satisfy the various requirements that are stipulated in the law. We do not want to say “yes” in terms of salaries that we have not yet confirmed.”

PSMAS, said Parirenyatwa, was jointly managed by his ministry, and the Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare and Finance ministries.

Mashonaland West Senator Prisca Mupfumira (Zanu-PF) wanted to know if government would suspend the Dube-led executive pending investigations, saying chances were that evidence might be suppressed should investigations be done while they were in office.

“We know that the law of the country stipulates that everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Why don’t you do as what happened at ZBC where the CEO was suspended to facilitate investigations  because honestly how can you carry out investigations when one is in office?” she said. “We are urgently looking at what you have said,” responded Parirenyatwa.

Chiefs Council president Fortune Charumbira asked if government was dealing with the “obscene” salary structures in parastatals and State-owned entities.

“It is like they are in a different economy (from) others,” he said.
Parirenyatwa responded: “I share with you your sentiments. If we compare the salaries it means you can all be paid by one person here.”

11.  Minister Moyo Fires ZBC Boss, Board for Incompetence

Ntungamili Nkomo- Available at http://www.voazimbabwe.com/content/zimbabwe-jonathan-moyo-fires-zbc-boss-board/1790374.html [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

x

WASHINGTON DC — Information Minister Jonathan Moyo on Thursday moved in to reverse the decay at the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) by dissolving the state broadcaster’s board and placing its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Happison Muchechetere on forced leave.
 
ZBC General Manager for Radio Services, Allan Chiweshe, was immediately installed as Acting CEO.
 
Minister Moyo, whose frustrations with the broadcaster’s management for incompetence is a matter of public record, said he was forced to wield the hatchet in the “national interest” after the board failed to produce a turnaround strategy for the institution.
 
“In the circumstances, and upon appropriate consultations, the ZBC Board is hereby dissolved with immediate effect,” Moyo said in a statement.
 
“In the same vein and with immediate effect, the ZBC Chief Executive Officer Happison Muchechetere is hereby sent on leave with full pay until further notice. “This decision has been taken in order to enable a full due diligence and organizational audit of ZBC,” the Minister added.
 
The removal of Muchechetere and his board, Moyo said, would “facilitate the crafting and implementation of the long-delayed turnaround strategy which the national broadcaster deserves and must now have in the national interest.”
 
Minister Moyo’s move is sure to inspire hope among hundreds of miserable ZBC staffers who have had to endure months of nonpayment while their bosses were said to be rewarding themselves with hefty incomes – despite the fact that the public broadcaster was virtually broke.
 
An unnamed state broadcaster employee broke down the salary discrepancies to The Zimbabwe Independent recently as follows: “The least paid manager nets around US$7,000, while general managers get about US$18,000, heads of department around US$14,000 and the highest paid manager more than $20,000. The rest of the employees (reporters and supporting staff) get below US$1,000.”
 
The dissolved board comprised of Chairperson Cuthbert Dube, his deputy Doreen Sibanda and members Gibson Mashingaidze, Bob Nyabinde, Farai Mutamangira, Job Jonhera, Benjamin Mabenge, Felix Muchemwa, Trevor Manhanga, Clemence Mabaso and one, M. Manuhwa.
 
Moyo noted that ZBC had for sometime faced “critical leadership and managerial challenges that have not only compromised the national broadcaster’s capacity to effectively and meaningfully discharge its broadcasting mandate but which have also negatively affected the welfare interests of ZBC employees.”

 

12.   Zanu-PF distances itself from Mujuru’s utterances

Available at http://harare24.com/index-id-news-zk-18677.html[ Accessed on 13 February 2014]

 

THE ruling Zanu-PF yesterday came out in support of the media for exposing the rot in State owned companies, leaving Vice-President Joice Mujuru a lone voice in her attempts to muzzle journalists.

Mujuru invited the ire of Zimbabweans on Monday after she was quoted by The Herald newspaper saying exposing corruption in parastatals and related companies by the media could be the work of detractors bent on destroying the government and stalling its programmes.

She accused unnamed whistleblowers of trying to destroy Zanu-PF from within by exposing the deep seated corruption.

But Zanu-PF national spokesperson Rugare Gumbo, in a rare statement availed to all media houses and even posted on social media networks appeared to be distancing the party from Mujuru’s utterances.

Gumbo said Zanu-PF had a zero tolerance on corruption and the stance “has most assiduously” been pronounced at party level by President Robert Mugabe, Mujuru and national chairperson Simon Khaya Moyo.

He also paid tribute to the State and private media for exposing corruption at State enterprises.

“This explains why for us corruption was an election issue and why, like the other issues that really matter to us, it was at the very heart of our election manifesto,” Gumbo said.

He said the Zanu-PF conference in Chinhoyi last year had come up with a raft of resolutions, chief among them the need to adopt a zero tolerance approach to corruption.

“That resolution has since found expression in ZimAsset (Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation) and, along with every other issue in that blueprint, is currently being spearheaded by the office of the President and Cabinet. We believe that this is as it should be,” Gumbo said.

He commended the Office of the President for its role in the revelation of corrupt activities, specifically in respect of the obscene salaries awarded to executives of public parastatals and local authorities.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this unacceptable and selfish state of affairs and wish to urge the Office of the President to continue to act in the national interest,” the Zanu-PF spokesman said.

“We would also like to thank the media, both public and private, for their concerted efforts in bringing this shameful situation to public light.”

Gumbo said Zanu-PF would take decisive measures to eradicate corruption in all its forms. “Those involved in corrupt activities must and will face the full wrath of the law and we are determined to make this a reality,” he said.

Gumbo urged all government ministries to act in the spirit of ZimAsset and in the national interest by carrying out extensive audits in their respective ministries “as we believe it will lead to public accountability and instil confidence in the use of public funds”.

He said Zanu-PF believed that complex and intricate issues like corruption cannot be resolved in “a piecemeal, haphazard and simplistic manner”.

“The party needs a comprehensive plan and policy to deal with this menace,” he said.

“Everything must be done above board in an orderly, organised and systematic way to prevent possible accusation of a cover-up.”

Curiously, the statement did no make any reference to Mujuru’s utterances.

Meanwhile, Mujuru last night said she was wrongly quoted by the media and was not against the anti-corruption blitz.

Mujuru’s denial was reported on ZTV’s main news and is set to bring a new twist in the State media-led blitz against corruption.

She warned journalists against being used in internal fights and advised them to be professional.

– Southern Eye

13.   Zimbabwe pay scandal: Call for VP Mujuru to resign

Available at http://www.namibian.com.na/indexx.php?id=9202&page_type=story_detail. [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

 

CAPE TOWN – Zimbabwe’s main opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), has reportedly called for the resignation of the country’s vice president Joice Mujuru for “condoning corruption in government and state-owned enterprises”.

 

The Zimbabwean media has in recent weeks been awash with reports exposing obscene salaries in public institutions.

The most shocking revelations have related to the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), which President Robert Mugabe’s spokesperson George Charamba is effectively responsible for as permanent secretary of the information ministry.

An even bigger scandal has emerged at the government-run health insurer for civil servants PSMAS, where the chief executive earned US$230 000 per month while service providers were not paid and members had to pay cash upfront for health care.

But, according to The Herald, while addressing a women’s conference over the weekend, Mujuru castigated the exposure of the corrupt activities in parastatals and related companies in the media, saying this might be the work of detractors bent on destroying the government and stalling its programmes.
The MDC, however, reacted with disgust and outrage over Mujuru’s utterances, saying she should be investigated by the anti-corruption commission and the police, said a newzimbabwe.com report.
In a statement, MDC spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora called for action from all Zimbabweans and urged them to stage a massive demonstration against the corrupt activities.

Mwonzora said the utterances by Mujuru were meant to threaten and prevent the press from reporting on corruption by Zanu-PF officials.

Mwonzora also demanded to know what was going on in the diamond industry “because that is exactly where a lot of corruption was done by Zanu-PF and state officials”.

Information minister Jonathan Moyo revealed during the weekend that President Robert Mugabe was “dismayed” by the pay scandal and instructed that ministers act to stop the rot.

Analysts have, however, treated investigations by the government into the operations of state enterprises with suspicion, saying the ongoing purges were likely part of a grand scheme of political cleansing as the same executives were appointed by parastatal boards appointed by government ministers.

Meanwhile, unconfirmed reports have it that Charamba has reportedly offered to resign following reports of massive corruption in the country’s public sector.

According to newzimbabwe.com, Charamba – who has reportedly been fingered in some of these scandalous revelations – also called on cabinet ministers who presided over the affected public entities to be honourable and do the same.

The media in recent weeks has been awash with stories exposing obscene salaries in public institutions.
 – Nampa-AFP

 

14.   Outrage over Mujuru’s open mouth shut mind

Available at http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_outrage-over-open-mouth-shut-mind-vp/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

MEDIA activists and ordinary Zimbabweans have expressed outrage over Acting President Joyce Mujuru’s weekend remarks attacking newspaper revelations about the extensive pay scandal dogging the country’s loss making state enterprises.

Now referred to as “Salarygate”, the salary scandal was ignited by the dismissal of Zimbabwe Broadcasting Cooperation (ZBC) CEO Happison Muchechetere and has since gathered a head of steam with allegations that most of the country’s 78 State enterprises as well as the 92 local authorities were affected.

Outed after Muchechetere was the Cuthbert Dube-led executive at the Public Service Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) which allegedly shared $1 million among eight individuals every month when the quasi-government organisation was struggling to honour its financial obligations.

But while the nation waited with bated breath to see how the country’s rulers respond to the alarming haemorrhage on State coffers, Vice President Mujuru chose to turn her ammunition on the media, insisting they were being used by Zanu PF “saboteurs” to ruin the party and its government.

Her comments elicited strong resentment from media players who accused the country’s most powerful woman politician of attempting to gag the press.

Tawanda Majoni, a board member of the Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe (VMCZ) said Mujuru’s comments were unacceptable.

“It would always be unacceptable for anybody, whether in high or low office, to try to gag the media from reporting on any issue especially on corruption, corruption of which we know has become such a widespread malignance in Zimbabwe,” said Majoni.

“The role of the media is to do an oversight over government, executive, judiciary as well as society and inform the same society.”

Media Institute of Southern Africa – Zimbabwe chair Njabulo Ncube said Mujuru was being irresponsible.

“It’s is a travesty of justice on the part of VP Mujuru to call for a halt in reporting about the looting of state resources at government entities,” he said.

“Our role as the media is to expose corruption. So we will be failing the nation if we take Mujuru’s advice. We need to continue exposing the rot in government, but by trying to force the media to turn a blind eye on corruption, she is being irresponsible.”

Zimbabwe National Editors’ Forum secretary general and veteran journalistBarnabas Thondhlana said Mujuru’s comments were informed by factional wars within Zanu PF, insisting the media must not be dragged into her party’s internal squabbles.

“The media’s role is to be the watchdog of society. The media reports without fear or favour and brings to the public sphere things which might be hidden,” he said.

“It is not for the media to bother about factions in political parties, for that is not our mandate. We report news as it happens for the public good. We make public that which government quasi-government bodies and the private sector wish to keep hidden.

“Where public funds are concerned, it is the duty of the media to enquire how those funds are being utilised. The public expects to be informed about how their hard-earned dollars are being spent.”

Journalist Itai Dzamari said it was very unfortunate a whole country has been dragged into an argument on Mujuru’s comments and lost sight of the bigger picture where citizens must be demanding the prosecution of the looters.

“The most important question becomes, ‘will this develop to a point where corrective action would be taken?’. That is the major concern to the nation. We have had plenty such stories that have gone away as entertainment but with no action being taken.”

Former Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) president Pride Mkono also condemned Mujuru.

“It goes on to prove how shameless and morally bankrupt our leaders have become,” he said.

“Surely, how can anyone in their normal senses castigate the public exposure of the rot in our public enterprises unless that person is complicit and has interests? The Vice President must think again.”

 

15.   Zapu blasts Mujuru over media slur

Nelson Sibanda- Available at http://harare24.com/index-id-news-zk-18677.html [ Accessed on 13 February 2014]

The Dumiso Dabengwa led Zimbabwe African People’s Union has expressed disappointment at statements made by Acting President, Joyce Mujuru, when she blamed the media for exposing salary scandals at parastatals.

Mujuru told the Zanu (PF) Mashonaland West Provincial Women’s Congress in Chinhoyi last Saturday: “The salary exposures should not be discussed in the media and are works of inside enemies bent on destroying the Zanu (PF) government and stall its programs.”

Zapu says Mujuru is an agent of deception for trying to gag the media. “Mujuru’s speech is irresponsible and in bad taste more so as it comes from someone who is supposed to uphold values of the constitution.

“The duty of the press is to report events in a fair and credible manner like what is happening in the salaries saga,” Zapu spokesperson, Mjobisa Noko, said in a statement.

Various heads and board members at State linked enterprises have in recent weeks reportedly been receiving lofty salaries against poor organizational performance, with some of them already on suspension or fired.

Noko said that the Zanu (PF) government had presided over the rot for the last 34 years and now “the chickens were coming home to roost”. He said that Zanu (PF) could not just wish away issues that were of paramount importance to the citizenry, referring to the scandalous salaries and allowances parastatal heads have been getting.

According to Noko, Mujuru and her cronies have been siphoning state coffers for many years and it was time they got exposed. Zapu warned Zanu (PF) to stay clear of the media “since it has the right to inform the people about events taking place around the country, whether good or bad’, saying Zimbabweans had the right to access public information.

“The nation needs answers on issues to do with diamond mining, corruption in the security sector, (parastatal salary scams), the land issue (and) farm implements among others,” said Noko.

Since the economy was saddled with massive company closures, the media had the role to inform the public “such a sad state of affairs”. Given the prevailing economic situation, Zapu said it would encourage investigative journalism to expose corruption and other forms of irregularities

16.   MUJURU RAGES OVER OBSCENE SALARIES REPORTS

Available at  http://www.newsdzezimbabwe.co.uk/2014/02/mujuru-rages-over-obscene-salaries.html. [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

ACTING President Joice Mujuru has castigated the exposure of corrupt activities in parastatals and related companies in the media, saying this might be the work of detractors bent on destroying Government and stall its programmes. 

 Over the past four weeks the media converged to expose graft in parastatals, state enterprises and quasi-Government institutions that has left the generality of people calling for a commission of enquiry into the operations of public enterprises that should be at the forefront of operationalising the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset), the country’s five-year development programme.
Mujuru, who was addressing the Zanu-PF Mashonaland West provincial women’s conference in Chinhoyi on Saturday, said the graft cases should not be discussed in the media.
“Nditeererei madzimai, chandiri kukuudzai ndochinhu chekupedzisira,” she said.  “Iyi nyaya yatiri kutaura iyi yehuori hwemaparastatals muchenjere kuti ndeimwe nzira yaunzwa nevanhu vari kuda kupwanya nyika ino iyi.

“Vari kuziva kuti chii chakabata nyika yeZimbabwe. They know what is done by our parastatals. They will go and talk to some of our people and do what is happening.
“Vanotaura kuti kana tabva kuZBC, toenda kuZESA, toenda kuZINWA. Regai kuzoti vanhu vacho havasi veZanu-PF, aiwa, zvinonzi kana usingagone kumukurira unomujoina, worova uchibva mukati make, saka mochenjera. Saka tiri kuti nyaya iri mumaoko mehofisi yaPresident.”

The Acting President said the corruption cases were not the business of newspapers, saying the way the cases were being exposed raised eyebrows.

“Nyaya idzi hadzitongwe  mumanewspaper,” she said. “Inyaya dzinonyatsogadzirwa magadzirirwo adzo, asi unozoona mamhanyisirwo adzinoitwa mumapaper wozvibvunza futi kuti haa saka vanotaura kuti inyaya dzekuda kupwanya hurumende nekupwanya musangano weZanu-PF zvechokwadi vari pamwe chete nevanhu vari kuita izvi,’’ she said

Mujuru accused people of wasting their time on useless issues and accused some Zanu-PF members of fighting from within to destroy Government programmes.

“Saka madzimai zvirikutidyira nguva yedu hazvina basa,” she said. “Izvi zvekudyiwa kwemazimari, izvi zvatargeta maparastatals edu atiri kuchema kuti Zesa hatina maindustry, we want more Zesa iye zvino kunounzwa maproject.

“Regai nditi mabusiness ndanga ndajairawo semi, mabusiness ekuita masolar power, mahydro power unoona ichitora gore nemwedzi inoraudza ichingotaurwa, ichingotaurwa, nhai varume muri kumboziva here kuti pananamai vaneCaesar vari kufa magetsi adzima, muri kumboziva here kuti kune vana vari kufa vari pamaoxygen magetsi adzima nekushomeka kana maproject anobata vanhu pakupa mabasa, pakupa hupenyu. Handisi kuti tyorai mutemo.” herald

 

 

About the Corruption Media Monitoring Project

 

The Corruption Media Monitoring Project (CMMP) is a project of the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) which which monitors and analyses media reports on corruption and related issues. The weekly e-Corruption Alerts  gives an analysis of cases of corruption reported in the media. Furthermore, it gives full details of the articles as well as their authors.

 

 

The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) is a regional, non-governmental, non-profit making and non-political organisation that was founded in 2004 to contribute towards the prevention and combating of corruption in Southern Africa.[19]

 

The organization was founded by individuals who are concerned about the devastating impact of corruption on development. There was also a realization that Southern African countries and many in the world were not adequately sharing anti-corruption good practices and ACT-Southern Africa wanted to bridge the information gap.

 

«    Vision

The vision of ACT-Southern Africa is to witness an ‘Accountable, transparent and legitimate public and private sector institutions operating alongside a well informed, empowered and actively engaged citizenry’.

 

«    Mission Statement

To contribute towards good governance and the ending of corruption in Southern Africa through: (1) Institutional capacity building, (2) Situational prevention of corruption, (3) Social prevention and public empowerment; (4) Anti-corruption policy and law reform and (5) Research and development.

 

«    Legal status

ACT-Southern Africa is registered in the Republic of South Africa under the Non-Profit Organisation Act[20].  It is also registered in Zimbabwe as a Trust by the Registrar of Deeds[21].

 


[1] Nyashanu, J (2014). Outrage over Muchechetere’s ‘filthy’ package. [online].  Available at https://www.newsday.co.zw/2013/12/11/outrage-muchecheteres-filthy-package/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[2] Business Reporter (2014), Probe medical aid societies — CCZ. [online]. Available at https://www.newsday.co.zw/2014/02/12/probe-medical-aid-societies-ccz/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[3] White House (2014) White House Salaries. [online]. Available at  http://www.whitehouse.gov/21stcenturygov/tools/salaries [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[4] Wikipedia (2014). President of the United States. [online]. Available at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/President_of_the_United_States. [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[5] Converted at the rate of N$11 = US$1

[6] Shinovene, I (2013), Namibia: Salaries of SOEs Being Re-Classified. [online] Available at http://www.namibian.com.na/indexx.php?archive_id=112409&page_type=archive_story_detail&page=199 [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[7] Editor (2014). US$2m housing scandal at ZBC [online]. Available at http://www.herald.co.zw/us2m-housing-scandal-at-zbc/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[8] Tafirenyika, M (2014). ZBC boss in $1m scandal. [online]. Available at http://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2014/01/28/zbc-boss-in-1m-scandal [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[10] Available at http://harare24.com/index-id-news-zk-18677.html[ Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[11] Available at http://harare24.com/index-id-news-zk-18677.html [ Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[13] Available at http://www.namibian.com.na/indexx.php?id=9202&page_type=story_detail. [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[14] Chipunza, P (2014). [online] PSMAS fires Cuthbert Dube. [online] Available at http://www.herald.co.zw/psmas-fires-cuthbert-dube/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[15] Harare Bureau (2014). PSMAS board slashes Cuthbert Dube’s salary. [online]. Available at http://www.chronicle.co.zw/psmas-board-slashes-cuthbert-dubes-salary/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[16] Nehanda Radio (2014). Mugabe spokesman offers to resign over salary scandal. [online]. Available at Available at http://nehandaradio.com/2014/02/10/mugabe-spokesman-offers-to-resign-over-salary-scandal/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[17] Nkomo, N (2013). Minister Moyo Fires ZBC Boss, Board for Incompetence [online]. Available at http://www.voazimbabwe.com/content/zimbabwe-jonathan-moyo-fires-zbc-boss-board/1790374.html [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

[18] Business Reporter (2014). Probe medical aid societies — CCZ. [online]. Available at https://www.newsday.co.zw/2014/02/12/probe-medical-aid-societies-ccz/ [Accessed on 13 February 2014]

 

[19] In line with the Statute of ACT-Southern Africa, the targeted countries include: The Republic of Angola, The Republic of Botswana, The Democratic Republic of Congo, The Kingdom of Lesotho, The Republic of Malawi, The Republic of Madagascar, The Republic of Mauritius, The Republic of Mozambique, The Republic of Namibia, The Republic of Seychelles, The Republic of South Africa, The Kingdom of Swaziland, The United Republic of Tanzania, The Republic of Zambia and The Republic of Zimbabwe

[20] Registration No. 045-923-NPO

[21] Deeds registration number: MA 147/2004

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