President Mugabe fingered in high level corruption at ZINARA
By Tatenda Dewa | Harare Bureau |
President Robert Mugabe’s name has surfaced in a $1.3 million fraud case involving Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (ZINARA) executives who seem to have been let off the hook.
ZINARA chief executive officer, Moses Juma, and non-executive director, Davison Norupiri, were recently released from custody at Avondale Police Station in Harare when Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko personally ordered their freedom.
After that the two who have not appeared in court following attempted prosecution instigated by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) for allegedly swindling the money from the administration.
Officers from the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) reportedly visited ZACC offices purporting to be looking for information relating to the arrest of Juma and Norupiri.
ZINARA is chaired by Albert Mugabe, a nephew to the president, while the two administration executives have been bankrolling donations and campaigns by Grace Mugabe and Mphoko using the roads utility’s funds.
President Mugabe is reportedly reluctant to have the two prosecuted, apparently after the intervention of Grace, Mphoko and the ZINARA chair.
Phyllis Chikundura, the ZACC public relations officer, confirmed that the ZINARA executives were released by senior authorities, adding that she was not aware what would happen to Juma and Norupiri.
“As of now I don’t know because there were released by a higher office. There are currently investigations underway,” Chikundura is quoted by the local independent media as saying.
In July, Norupiri roped in Grace to officiate at an awards ceremony held by the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) where he is the chairperson.
The president’s wife, who got a controversial doctoral degree from the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) where her husband is the chancellor, was gifted with an award at the ceremony held in Victoria Falls.
Mphoko and Grace have recently been donating various goods to southern provinces and the vice president admitted on at least two occasions that ZINARA was providing the handouts.
Mugabe frequently blasts corruption but is often accused of failing to take decisive action against his corrupt juniors. Nehanda Radio