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‘ED is very clear on sanctions but uncertain on fighting corruption’ – Mliswa

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda Politics |

Norton legislator Temba Mliswa has said President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s recent State of The Nation Address (SONA) failed to address how the government intends to fight corruption in Zimbabwe.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Norton MP Temba Mliswa (Independent)
President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Norton MP Temba Mliswa (Independent)

Debating Mnangagwa’s SONA delivered during the opening of the Fourth Session of the Ninth Parliament last week, Mliswa said corruption was destroying the economy more than sanctions.

Government has always been blaming sanctions for the economic turmoil in ZIMBABWE and Mnangagwa has since invited the United Nations special rapporteur Alena Douhan into the country to assess the impact of sanctions on the enjoyment of human rights.

But Mliswa said the President was not clear in his speech on what the country had done in fighting corruption.

”Sanctions are external, but before sanctions, let us deal with corruption. We cannot be putting water in a pot that leaks and say let us cook,” Mliswa said.

“So to me, corruption is the biggest leak. Sanctions will be removed and money will come in, but if there is a leak, that money will not go anywhere.”

“The President was not clear in terms of our achievement in terms of corruption, his first target, and he was very clear in the third session about zero tolerance on corruption, but corruption has reached unprecedented levels where the nation has no confidence anymore.”

Mliswa also slammed the judiciary for the “catch and release” syndrome where bigwigs arrested for corruption are not convicted.

He accused the government of allowing foreigners to come and loot natural resources.

“You talk about the black cartels and the way cartels are more. The Indian cartels are more. There are private jets which land at the airport and smuggle gold, let us not talk about the gold we read about. There are really big deals we do not read about them.

“There are leakages at the border in terms of all that. Where are the people at the borders who are supposed to be stopping all this from happening? How much have we lost in our resources in terms of the gold and minerals of this country?” he charged.

“If we put those figures together, what will that do to this nation? What will that do to build hospitals and clinics? All that money put together would turn this country around because ordinary people, the only thing that they want is good healthcare for their children, water and sanitation and money to be able to buy what they want.”

Zanu PF chief whip Pupurai Togarepi, however, said the economic hardships were being caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and worsened by sanctions.

“The President’s address told me clearly that he is aware of the issues and I see him working together with his team to achieve good results,” Togarepi said.

“All Zimbabweans in all sectors must work together with the President and if that is done, we will achieve results.

“It is critical because we had challenges. We had the pandemic that has destroyed the economy, destroyed income and livelihoods. It also affected production and employment. We had a trajectory that appeared unstoppable, but when the pandemic came, it affected all of that.

“The issue of sanctions is a critical one, they must go and must go now.” Nehanda Radio