By Panashe Mabeza
The Zimbabwe Republic Police has cleared the air around the purported International Police (Interpol) red notice against former National Social Security Authority (NSSA) chair Mr Robin Vela.
In a letter by Police Deputy Commissioner General (Crime) Shepherd Mutamba to Mr Vela’s lawyers, Rubaya and Chatambudza Legal Practitioners, the law enforcement agency says it has not placed the former Nssa boss on an international wanted list.
The police further said they had no role to play in Mr Vela’s case, which was being investigated by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission.
Deputy Comm-Gen Mutamba wrote: “We acknowledge receipt of your minutes… accompanying a notarised affidavit statement together with voluminous documents related to the above matter (of Mr Vela on the Interpol list).
“Please be advised that this matter is being investigated by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption. As such, the Zimbabwe Republic Police has no part to play in the handling of the matter.”
Mr Vela was named in a Nssa forensic audit on allegations of bad governance in a case that resulted in the arrest of former Tourism Minister Priscah Mupfumira by Zacc over allegations of corruption involving US$95 million.
The investment banker has challenged the validity of the audit report at the High Court arguing it is flawed and should be nullified. A local bank is also challenging the audit findings.
Mr Vela was appointed Nssa board chair in 2015 and left in 2018 after the allegations levelled against him.
Meanwhile, the police have warned politicians against making allegations that the law enforcement agency was making partisan arrests.
“Whenever we arrest, we have confidence that there is a prima facie case to secure a conviction. In this regard, we do not begrudge the judiciary for concluding otherwise, premised on their findings after the full application and due observance of the legal procedures,” said the police on Twitter.
“For the avoidance of doubt in the ZRP, we have established a complaints handling mechanism which is within the public domain and accessible to all and sundry. In any case we are not immune to legal processes as no one is above the law.
“Having said this, no amount of threats or name calling will deter the police from carrying out its constitutional obligations. Rest assured that all unscrupulous and criminally inclined individuals will be arrested and dealt with according to the laws of the country.” The Sunday Mail