By Munyaradzi Musiiwa
A Government official and a police officer deployed at Beitbridge Border Post have been arrested by a Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) crack team in a joint operation with the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) loss control officers when they were caught corruptly demanding and collecting bribes from returning citizens and visitors entering the country from South Africa.
Two other police officers who were also part of the scam are on the run.
Tafadzwa Musakanya, a supervisor at the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement Beitbridge Border Post and Progress Laiza Tabarwa, a police officer stationed at Beitbridge Border Post were on Christmas Day arrested for allegedly demanding bribes and collecting money from returning citizens and other travellers coming from South Africa.
The two are being charged with criminal abuse of duty as public officers.
The two police officers who are on the run have been identified as constables Chokera and Msipa.
Zacc spokesperson Mr John Makamure confirmed the arrest of the two on Friday following a tip-off by the public.
“On 25 December, a Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission crack team acting in conjunction with the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority loss control officers received a tip-off from members of the public to the effect that Government officers deployed at the Beitbridge Border Post were demanding undue consideration from the returning citizens and visitors entering Zimbabwe from South Africa,” said Comm Makamure.
“Reacting to the tip-off, our officers pounced and noticed Musakanya, Tabarwa and other accomplices yet to be arrested demanding and collecting some funds from the returning citizens and visitors entering Zimbabwe from South Africa using motor vehicles.
After collecting the money from each and every vehicle passing through Gomba searching bay, the accused persons would place the money into their pockets with no receipts issued.”
Comm Makamure said when Zacc officers pounced on Musakanya and Tabarwa they found them in possession of the money.
“When Zacc pounced on the two and searched them, Musakanya was found with R1 170 and US$20 while Tabarwa was found in possession of R550. When constables Chokera and Msipa saw Musakanya and Tabarwa being searched and arrested by our officers they ran away and went to an unknown destination,” he said.
“Investigations established that the accused persons were corruptly demanding and collecting some money from each and every returning citizen and visitors entering Zimbabwe from South Africa driving motor vehicles at the Gomba searching bay within Beitbridge.”
Comm Makamure said the two were in police custody assisting with investigations. Sunday News