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Two CIOs under-fire for exposing corruption at state spy agency

Two Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) officials have been allegedly subjected to ill-treatment for having the guts to challenge massive looting happening at the state spy agency.

According to documents seen by The NewsHawks, which include court papers and correspondence between lawyers of the under-siege senior CIO officials, the organisation has reportedly been failing to follow public procurement procedures.

In an application for review in terms of clause 45(1) of the CIO code of conduct, following a ruling to expel them from the spy agency, the two spy officials, Charity Madyambudzi and Shadreck Mugabe said they have been targeted and subjected to cruel treatment as part of attempts to silence them for challenging corrupt tendencies in the institution.

In their application for review dated 16 May 2022, the two cited four members of the disciplinary committee housed at Chaminuka Building in Harare, the national headquarters of the CIO.

“We are deeply and severely aggrieved by the determination and penalty imposed on us by the respondents,” Madyambudzi said.

“They completely disregarded constitutional provisions and have to be set aside by the Minister of National Security.”

The applicants further revealed that they challenged a lot of irregularities in procurement and in the engagement of contractors within the CIO, opening them to attack by their superiors. This led to their suspension and ultimate dismissal by CIO Director-General Isaac Moyo.

It is reported that the two were in October 2020 unceremoniously excluded from the Material Resource Management (MRM) division to the Investment Branch and Security Branch respectively by the director of administration, Patrick Donald Mutasa.

They argued their exclusion was done without following proper procedures of a transfer such as conducting a handover/takeover in which documents are signed by incoming and outgoing officers.

Madyambudzi said the two began hearing “corridor talk” over their impending redeployment for upsetting their superiors, especially those responsible for procurement, finance and transport.

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“We had queried the way projects and engagements of contractors had been done, execution of services by contractors and failure to furnish us with the requisite information with regards to purchase for the purposes of updating records and also keeping track of expectations of Public Sector Investment Programme as is mandatory,” said Madyambudzi

“It was as a result of these differences that a ploy was devised in the Administrative Branch, Procurement Management Unit and Finance Division to get rid of the 2nd applicant and me since we refused to be engulfed in their corrupt schemes.

“Their fear was we were going to expose them since we had a lot of information in connection with their corruption activities which we had discussed with the Director Administration and heads of respective divisions.”

The applicants cited one of the corrupt deals as the renovations that would have ideally cost US$20 000 but were charged at a cost of US$80 000 on the parallel market rate and US$100 000 on the official market rate.

Madyambudzi said the two appealed to the CIO director-general following their transfer, seeking clarity on the intended objectives of the purported transfer which had been irregularly done.

She said she was also locked outside her office and forced to work from the car park. She is thus challenging why they were then charged and fired for absenteeism.

After being locked out of her office, she said she lost US$837 that she kept there.

“No investigation was done,” she said.

Madyambudzi argued that the handover/takeover process was frustrated by their superiors amid suspicion they intended to hide a lot of corruption cases that were bound to be exposed in the process.

“The ploy to get rid of us was clear from the attempts at subverting the handover/takeover procedures so that we would not properly record the state of play of funded projects, how disbursed funds had been used, etc with incoming officers signing for these after projects were visited and invoices, receipts etc done and produced,” she said.

“It is precisely because there was no misconduct that the respondents struggled to come up with allegations against us hence the failure to timeously commence the disciplinary proceedings.

“A handover/takeover process in a department that deals with high value projects is not and cannot be a one-day affair.

“The deponent’s desire to force us to abandon the process was part of the attempt to frustrate a proper recording of what were corrupt activities alleging that proper handover/takeover processes had not been done.

“Once the deponent had covered the change of locks at my office on October 19, 2020, the integrity of the handover/takeover process became compromised and impossible to complete in terms of Treasury Regulations.”