By Blessings Mashaya
President Emmerson Mnangagwa cannot weed out corrupt elements within his government because he has dirty hands, MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa has said. Speaking at a rally in Zvishavane on Saturday, Chamisa told his supporters that Mnangagwa is the symbol of corruption in Zimbabwe.
“I heard Mnangagwa saying he had created an anti-corruption unit in his office, I laughed and said a mosquito cannot cure malaria. People may think that I am lying but you must ask who is helping a certain business tycoon to export chrome outside this country, ask who is causing price increases through his involvement in fuel industry, ask gold panners who is grabbing their mines, they will tell you.”
Chamisa said all parastatals were destroyed by the ruling party because of corruption.
“Mnangagwa knows that Zimbabwe has for 38 years invested in corruption, the only industry that has been growing in this country is the industry of corruption.
Corruption is now a national religion; it is now a national anthem.
“Our current government is celebrating corruption, the country lost $15 billion and no one was arrested, the likes of Zupco (Zimbabwe United Passenger Company) and NRZ (National Railways of Zimbabwe) were destroyed because of corruption but no one was arrested. Everything which starts with letter ‘Z’ is corrupt in this country.
“We are going to arrest all those who were involved in corrupt activities; everyone who take money from government coffers is going to return it in six months. If they fail to do so we are going to use the law and our police so that we get back that money.”
Despite promising to take on corrupt elements in his office, Mnangagwa has failed to deliver on his promises with no single conviction so far on those alleged to be corrupt.
In fact, most of the officials nabbed on graft allegations are now out on relaxed bail conditions, with some having had their passports returned, including permanent secretaries accused of graft.
Chilling warnings made to individuals and companies accused of externalising foreign currency have so far come to nought, more than three months after the expiry of the March 19 deadline.
Chamisa also said the people of Zvishavane must not vote for Mnangagwa because he destroyed Shabanie Mine.
Meanwhile, Chamisa said traditional leaders will be part of his government structure.
“Traditional leaders are going to be in my government structures. I am going to meet them twice a year and hear their grievances and the plight of their people. We want to elevate the status of chiefs and all headmen, they are important; we are going to engage them when we do our budget.
“We are also going to change the Local Government Act. We are going to restore the status of executive mayors. They are blaming us on councils but our councils were failing because there was interference from Zanu PF ministers, we want to change this.” DailyNews